This investment in critical infrastructure is expected to open up approximately 160 hectares of greenfield land for residential development, to support increased housing supply and future growth in the city.

Administered by Kāinga Ora, the IAF is a fund of approximately $1 billion to support new or upgraded bulk infrastructure – such as roading, three waters and flood management – to enable new homes to be built in regions throughout the country. Councils, iwi and developers were invited to apply.

Kāinga Ora General Manager Commercial, Caroline McDowall, says the IAF-funded transport upgrades in Whangārei will support the community with improved access to services, education and employment opportunities.

“The transport upgrades will help lay the groundwork for future neighbourhoods, create connected communities, and help the Council and project partners meet the demand for housing in the area,” she says.

The Whangārei infrastructure projects funded through the IAF are expected to support the delivery of up to 1,000 homes over the next 10 to 15 years, and up to 2,000 additional homes in the longer-term.

Housing Minister Megan Woods at the Infrastructure Acceleration Fund announcement

The projects receiving funding include a new bridge at the end of Gillingham Road in the suburb of Kamo, to help increase access to and open up a much wider area for housing development. The new bridge will replace an existing single-lane timber bridge, which has stalled development plans to date.

IAF funding will also be used for a new roundabout on State Highway One with an arterial road and shared user path, connecting planned development areas in Springs Flat with services, education and employment opportunities.

Whangārei is part of the Te Tai Tokerau Northland region, an area of high housing need. In November 2022(external link) the Government allocated $48.6 million from the IAF to critical infrastructure projects in Northland, to support housing developments in Kawakawa and Kaikohe.

“The IAF funding for Whangārei further enables new housing opportunities in Te Tai Tokerau,” says Caroline. “It brings the total amount of IAF funding for the North to $58.9 million, with 14 infrastructure projects in the region benefitting from the investment.”

Whangārei District Mayor Vince Cocurullo says, “Our Council is very welcoming of this additional funding.  It is a great example of the way Central Government and Local Council can work together strategically.

“This funding helps Council advance roading projects that would normally have been on the books for a very long time. Advancing these projects also enables our team to work with developers to meet our District’s strategic goal of increasing housing stock in our District. Our Strategy recognises there will be big shifts in how we house our communities, especially in urban areas.

“This funding enables Council to support quality urban development and is an opportunity to further develop our relationship with Central Government and local developers.”

Today’s announcement follows on from earlier IAF funding allocations of $6.1 million in December 2021, $179 million in July 2022, $192 million in October 2022, and $539.8 million in November 2022.

To date, $926.7 million in IAF funding has been committed to critical infrastructure projects in 28 New Zealand cities and towns, now including Whangārei. Combined, these IAF-funded projects are expected to enable around 30,000 to 35,000 new homes for New Zealanders over the next 10 to 15 years.

Read the Government’s announcement(external link)

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Page updated: 3 February 2023