Boat harbour for Whakatāne

Te Rāhui is a new boat harbour due to open in 2024 in the Bay of Plenty, which will provide safe berthage and marine services in Whakatāne’s dynamic coastal and river environment.

15 March 2022


Berthage at the town wharf in Whakatāne, and throughout the East Coast of the North Island, has been at capacity for many years. The proposed Boat Harbour will provide a long-term supply of safer and more resilient berthage for vessel storage in the town.

The development will include a marine servicing centre with a mobile boat hoist of 80- to 100-tonne capacity, providing a new option for vessels to be lifted from the water to undergo maintenance and servicing on New Zealand’s east coast.

A new marine training school onsite will look to provide skilled workers for the site, as well as the existing marine industry in Whakatāne which includes two of New Zealand’s largest and most popular aluminium boat builders; Extreme Boats and Surtees Boats.

Ultimately the $29.4 million boat harbour will retain existing jobs and create upwards of 600 new jobs and flow-on economic benefits for the region.


It will also restore the connections and mauri of the river for future generations and enable key outcomes for the people of Whakatāne to be achieved.

Te Rāhui Herenga Waka is to be a world class marina operation in the town of Whakatāne, on New Zealand’s east coast. Stage one of the project will 60 berths for commercial boats with an 80 to 100 tonne travel lift and vessel maintenance facilities. Te Rāhui is a cornerstone of the region’s recovery plan delivering social restoration, economic restoration, and environmental restoration to Whakatāne.

Whakatāne’s new commercial boat harbour is one step closer to construction with the formalisation of a partnership between Te Rāhui Lands Trust, Whakatāne District Council, Ngāti Awa Group Holdings, the Crown via Kānoa – Regional Economic Development & Investment Unit, and agreement from landowners to progress the development.

Te Rāhui is named for the land upon which the proposed boat harbour will be lcoated. Herenga Waka means a place where a canoe is tied up, a mooring, marina.

There is a clear directive from all of the partners that Te Rāhui Herenga Waka performs to world-leading specifications with regards to the local and wider environment.

Mauri of the land and sea will be restored to this locality by removing contaminated wood, recreating wetland, and seeding coastal and marine flora and fauna.

To support economic growth in the region focused on marine tourism and fishing through enabling aquaculture, commercial charters and commercial fishing vessels to be safely stored and maintained in Whakatāne.

Funding of NZ$19.6 million has been provided by the Crown via Kānoa – Regional Economic Development & Investment Unit for the build of the boat harbour, and NZ$9.8 million is to be contributed by Whakatāne District Council, with Te Rāhui Lands Trust providing the site.



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