24 Mar 2015

Hapu opposes port extension

6:00 am on 24 March 2015

A hapū of Ngāti Whātua is opposed to a Ports of Auckland decision to build two controversial wharf extensions.

Protesters on Queen's Wharf.

Protesters on Queen's Wharf. Photo: RNZ / Murielle Baker

Ports of Auckland plans to extend Bledisloe Wharf further into Waitematā Harbour, despite vocal public opposition and 800 protesters turning out at the weekend demanding the project be stopped.

Deputy chair of Ngāti Whātua o Ōrakei Trust said the hapū was asking the council to taihoa [wait], and take more time to fully consider its stance on the issue.

Ngarimu Blair said any reclamation was irreversible and the hapū could not understand why there was such a rush to enable the reclamation to take place.

Mr Blair said there was a no immediate need to expand the wharf, and the group had not seen a business case that provided that.

A spokesperson for the mayor's office said the wharf extensions were outside the council's influence, but the longer term question of the council stance on reclamation could be re-debated.

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