About

Maitai Restoration Project Logo Horizonta

Cleaning up Nelson’s treasured Maitai / Mahitahi River

Project Maitai/Mahitahi is a four year project with funding until 2018. The project is focused on improving the environmental health of the Maitai River and all its tributaries including Brook Stream, York Stream, Sharlands Creek, Groom Creek and Saltwater Creek.

maitai catchment

The Maitai / Mahitahi River flows through the lives of Nelsonians – it is entwined with who we are and how we live in this city. Its waters provide a stunning natural habitat for a diverse range of species.

For generations the Maitai / Mahitahi has been an enviable source of water, food and fun for Nelsonians of all ages and stages – swimmers, walkers, cyclists, runners, picnickers, dog owners, families and visitors. The river is also of immense spiritual, traditional and historical significance to manawhenua iwi.

As New Zealand’s most accessible and enjoyable urban river, it’s time for us to do all we can to protect and restore the Maitai for generations to come.

The overarching aim of Project Maitai / Mahitahi is to create a river that is safe to swim in and take kai from, and that everyone can enjoy and feel proud of.

The river has a big job. It not only provides the city’s drinking water, it also acts as a stormwater and flood channel. Inevitably there are trade offs when a natural asset like a river intersects with an urban environment.

Overall, the Maitai / Mahitahi is considered in good health but it could be a lot better. With $400,000 set aside for each year of Project Maitai / Mahitahi, work is already well under way to make improvements across multiple fronts.

To see what’s already been done visit our Year 2 Achievements page or see what’s planned for this year.

Who's Involved

Council is working closely with a number of key partners to improve the health of the Maitai/Mahitahi River. See below a list of some of the Iwi, community groups, government agencies and companies involved.

  • Friends of the Maitai
  • Cawthron Institute
  • Department of Conservation
  • Nelmac
  • Fish and Game
  • Fish and Wildlife Services
  • Ngāti Kōata
  • Te ātiawa o Te Waka-a-Māui
  • Ngāti Rārua
  • Ngāti Tama ki Te Tau Ihu
  • Ngāti Kuia
  • Ngāti Apa ki te Rā Tō (Wairau)
  • Rangitāne o Wairau
  • Ngati Toa Rangatira
  • Rotary Club of Whakatu - Nelson
  • Victory Primary School
  • York Stream Group
  • Nelson College
  • Nelson College for Girls
  • Kiwi Conservation Club
  • Landcare Research
  • Fulton Hogan