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Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan

Creating fresh open spaces and people-friendly places on the lakefront.

About the project

Wānaka's lakefront is one of the Upper Clutha community's most treasured assets, integral to both local and visitor experiences in town and an increasingly popular place to be.

Produced in 2016 following three months of public consultation, the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan aims to create people-friendly places on the lakefront and make strong connections with Wānaka’s town centre.

The Plan is split into five stages of work for different parts of the lakefront, and driven by four ‘big moves’. Each of these ‘big moves’ has been shaped by community feedback and work to guide each stage of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan. The ‘big moves’ are:

  • Restore and develop ecology through ecological enhancements and native revegetation planting. 
  • Provide continuous access with a pedestrian/cycleway promenade around the lakefront.
  • Improve landuse with lakefront linear parks and precincts.
  • Provide a range of facilities.

The Plan also aspires to enhance the visibility of Kāi Tahu through lakefront design, reflecting the importance of the lake to mana whenua, the Wānaka community, and to visitors. 

Stages of work

  • Stage One of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan saw the construction of the Wānaka-Mt Aspiring Road Carpark, completed in December 2018.

  • Now complete, Stage Two of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan runs along the lake's edge between McDougall Street and Dungarvon Street, and saw the implementation of a number of features, including:

    • A shared pathway running along the lakefront
    • 114 new car parking spaces added along the lakeside of Ardmore Street, broken into sections to create more view shafts and access points to the lakefront
    • Te Ara Maumahara: historical tiles showcasing significant local, cultural, national and international moments in time
    • Natural shared spaces with low-lying native planting and trees
    • A map of the area known as Te Huruhuru's Map integrated into the shared pathway
  • Now complete, Stage Three of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan runs from Bullock Creek through to the Wānaka Marina, and saw the implementation of a number of features, including:

    • Restoration and development of native vegetation - large scale planting to maintain the lakefront's rugged, wild landscape.

    • Te Ara Wānaka - a shared pathway for pedestrians and cyclists that connects Wānaka's Town Centre with the Marina.

    • A boardwalk running along the lake's edge.

    • Informative signage - highlights of the area's significance to Kāi Tahu, and details of native plant and animal life found nearby.

    • Improved landuse - improvement of lawn areas to allow for recreation activities.

  • Stage Four of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan is adjacent to Wānaka's Town Centre. Initial work on a Concept Plan for this area is underway.

  • Stage Five of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan will improve existing active travel connections on the lakefront, with new sections of the shared pathway Te Ara Wānaka to run from the completed Stage Three area, past the marina and yacht club, to connect with the start of the Eely Point lakeside trail.

    More information on a start date for construction, and what to expect will be shared in July 2024.


What's the latest?

21 June 2024

Information on construction of Stage Five of the Wānaka Lakefront Development Plan and what to expect will be shared in the next few weeks. Watch this space!