Waikato is a major energy region, producing up to one third of the nation’s total renewable (non-thermal) electricity. Almost 40 per cent of installed generation capacity is in the Waikato including five thermal plants, 10 hydro plants, seven geothermal plants and one wind farm.
New Zealand’s largest thermal power station is Waikato-based, at Huntly, and can provide up to 20 per cent of the nation’s total electricity needs. Huntly Power Station can use either coal, gas or both simultaneously as fuel. Coal is sourced from Waikato-based coal-fields.
The district’s 28-turbine wind farm is at Te Uku near Raglan. It can generate enough renewable energy each year to fuel around 28,000 average New Zealand homes.
The Waikato is also an important corridor for the Maui gas pipeline stretching from Taranaki to the Huntly Power Station and on to Auckland. There are more than 2,500km of high-pressure transmission pipelines across the North Island of New Zealand and more than half of the distribution pipeline and service connections are in the Waikato.
The New Zealand Energy Strategy aims to have 90 per cent of all electricity needs being met by renewable forms of energy by 2025. With infrastructure and personnel in place, the Waikato is poised to play a key role in the energy sector in the future.
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Road – Waikato Expressway
There are more heavy commercial vehicle movements through the Waikato per day than through any other region in New Zealand. In recent years, there has been major government investment in significant roading projects, particularly the Waikato Expressway. When complete in 2019, the Waikato Expressway will deliver a four-lane highway from the Bombay Hills just south of Auckland, to Cambridge, just south of Hamilton.
A number of the seven sections of the Waikato Expressway are complete, already increasing capacity, improving safety and reducing travel times. The Expressway will also reduce congestion in smaller Waikato townships and provide better access to important cultural and historic sites.
A rail network runs the length of New Zealand, with primary passenger terminals in Auckland and Hamilton. There has been recent rail freight handling infrastructure investment in South Auckland that borders the Waikato district.
An NZ$33 billion inland port is proposed for Ruakura in Hamilton, linking the Waikato district with the seaports in Auckland and Tauranga and providing a key rail link for exporters. The port is in the advanced planning stage. An intermodal freight hub is also planned for Horotiu, just north of Hamilton next to the Waikato Expressway and North Island main trunk rail line.
Crown Fibre Holdings has announced in January 2017 the second initiative of Ultrafast Broadband to eight Waikato district towns, Tuakau, Te Kauwhata, Raglan, Whatawhata, Huntly, Ngaruawahia, Taupiri and Horotiu. The expansion of the network means businesses in our town can stay connected globally, all while enjoying a rural lifestyle.
Broadband coverage throughout the Waikato district is extensive and continues to improve. The New Zealand government has invested heavily in the rollout of an ultra-fast fibre optic broadband network for urban areas as well as high-speed rural broadband.
In urban areas throughout the district, consumers have access to broadband services via a range of providers operating in a competitive market. The associated network infrastructure is currently being installed throughout New Zealand by Chorus.
Click the link below to see what broadband services the network can support, as well as details on the implementation of planned services including ultra-fast broadband. Please talk directly to a service provider to confirm details of services offered.
The Port of Tauranga and Ports of Auckland are key sea ports for Waikato exporters and importers. Both provide a broad range of cargo handling and logistics services and are easily accessed via world-class road and rail links.
Auckland International Airport is the largest and busiest airport in New Zealand. The airport is located near Mangere, 21 km south of the downtown Auckland city centre and just 35 minutes offpeak driving time from the north of the Waikato district. Hamilton Airport, just south of Hamilton city, provides a full range of domestic flight and freight options.
Waikato District Council provides water and wastewater infrastructure services throughout the Waikato district. The council works in conjunction with neighbouring councils in order to maximise efficiencies and manage wastewater and stormwater sustainably. Both urban and rural water allocation is managed by the Waikato Regional Council to ensure that this finite resource is well managed and strategically allocated. Water is sourced from aquifers, ground water and rivers/streams, including the Waikato River.
Three Waters Strategy
The sub-regional Three Waters Strategy involves three council organisations – Waikato District Council, Hamilton City Council and Waipa District Council. The Strategy sets out how water, wastewater and stormwater will be managed over the next 50 years in order to meet sub-regional growth. The Strategy covers all council-owned water, waste water and stormwater services and infrastructure plus council-owned and operated land drainage schemes.
Our northern towns of Pokeno and Tuakau source their water from bores. This water is used to service both residential and industrial areas. The Council plans to upgrade water supply for these towns over the coming years to meet the expected population growth and the growing industrial and commercial usage demand.
Throughout the wider Waikato region, solid waste is disposed of in landfills or cleanfills. It may also be reused as a soil conditioner or fertiliser or incinerated at specific facilities.
Some waste, particularly hazardous waste, is in long-term storage or managed on site under stringent conditions aimed at protecting environmental and human health. Occasionally, waste will be taken out of the region for treatment or disposal.
A number of initiatives are underway to help organisations best manage waste. Waikato Regional Council has a free business-to-business waste brokering service that helps find markets for industrial waste and surplus materials.
The Regional Council also supports the Waikato Environmental Business Network that aims to stimulate initiatives to help business improve environmental performance while maintaining profitability. The Business Network undertakes low-cost environmental audits, provides seminars and information and manages the Waikato Business and the Environment Awards.
One of the Waikato district’s major strategic advantages is the availability of top-class industrial, business and residential land. Land in the district is becoming increasingly sought after as new arrivals and existing residents seek to take advantage of the district’s superior location.
The Waikato district neighbours New Zealand’s largest city and is adjacent to major road and rail corridors, providing good access to two world-class sea ports as well as a major international airport. Despite that, land remains affordable, particularly in comparison to land in Auckland and other major New Zealand cities.
Industry and business land
Waikato district has land currently available for various forms of business use. The district has taken a strategic approach to zoning and has developed primary industry zones in Pokeno, Helenslee, Tuakau and Horotiu. Other business land is still available in Huntly, Ngaruawahia, Raglan, Te Kauwhata, Tamahere and in pockets throughout the district.
Waikato district is an outstanding place to live. Its natural features, location, rich cultural heritage, excellent schooling and significant lifestyle advantages are a magnet for those seeking a high quality of life. The district offers huge residential choice and land remains available for development into residential lifestyle blocks, semi-rural blocks or in urban centres. The residential real estate market is vibrant and is serviced by a number of reputable real estate companies.
New Zealand has a world-class publicly-funded state schooling system with schooling compulsory from ages six to 16. A number of pre-school options are also available prior to formal schooling beginning.
Most students, in the Waikato district, attend two schools – a primary school (ages 5–12) and a high-school (ages 12-17/18). Usually schooling options can be found close to home, although a number of world-class private boarding schools are also available in the Waikato region.
Waikato has a huge range of top-quality educational institutions, ranging from pre-school (0-5 years) facilities to world-class tertiary institutions. The University of Auckland and Auckland University of Technology are within 40 minutes' drive of the district’s northern border and the University of Waikato and Wintec have major facilities in Hamilton city.
In the Waikato district there are more than 50 primary/intermediate schools, four high-schools and a number of tertiary education providers either in the district or very close by, including Waikato University and Wintec (both based in nearby Hamilton). The world-ranked Auckland University and Auckland University of Technology (AUT) are within driving distance of the furthest point in the district.
Te Whare Wānanga O Aotearoa (University of New Zealand) has a campus in Huntly and a range of private training and education providers are based in the Waikato.
Secular education is provided via the delivery of a national curriculum for years 1 to 10. Most schools teach in English, although some opt to teach in New Zealand’s second language, Māori. Both single-sex and co-educational secondary school options are available.
Following high school, many students move on to tertiary study, choosing from a range of courses from school to work programmes through to post-graduate study and research. Tertiary education is delivered via both state and privately-owned institutions and is partly government-funded.