Cultural Significance

Understanding the Bay’s cultural significance

Te Matau a Māui (or Hawke Bay) contains taonga of significant cultural value to local iwi, including Pania Reef and Moremore Maitaitai Reserve at Tangoio.

At the start of our project, we identified local Māori as key stakeholders in the project and with help from Ngāti Kahungunu Iwi Incorporated, set about engaging kanohi ki te kanohi (face-to-face) with hapū representatives.

Ngāti Pārau, Maungaharuru-Tangitū Trust and Mana Ahuriri Trust all have a strong relationship with the area surrounding Napier Port. We engaged directly with all three entities, as well as presenting to other Māori organisations. As the project progressed, we kept key hapū groups fully informed, giving access to relevant studies as they were completed to help inform their views.

Ngāti Pārau hapū, who whakapapa back to Pania (of the reef), was nominated to facilitate a Cultural Impact Assessment. This is included in the studies forming part of the applications, and you can read the full assessment here.

The Cultural Impact Assessment’s objectives were to:

  • Document the cultural significance of the area within which the construction of the proposed berth and associated dredging and disposal would occur, and in the vicinity of Pania Reef, including specific cultural values that may be affected
  • Identify the potential effects of our proposed development (both favourable and adverse) on cultural values
  • Assist Napier Port to improve our understanding of the cultural values associated with the environment within which our proposed development would be undertaken, and which may be affected by the activities
  • Identify appropriate measures to avoid, remedy or mitigate, where practical, any potential adverse effects of the proposed activities on cultural values.

In addition to independent advice, we’ve been working with local hapū to understand the history and importance of the area to Māori.

Above: The team working on the wharf project take to the harbour aboard the waka to hear about the history and cultural significance of Te Matau a Māui and Pania Reef.

Cultural Impact Assessment