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A gift for our city. A legacy for our children. A sanctuary for nature

He wāhi taonga mā te tini  


Waitākiri eco-sanctuary will provide an opportunity for Christchurch

people to reconnect with their natural and cultural heritage.

This project builds on 25 years of ecological restoration work at Travis Wetland through community participation, and will use a number of existing facilities.


Ongoing free access is a key goal. 180 hectares of land will be protected for education, conservation, recreation, tourism, and research in New Zealand's second largest city.

An innovative wildlife and pedestrian bridge will connect the existing Travis Wetland Nature Heritage Park with nearby red-zoned land. An 8-kilometre long predator proof fence 1.9 m high will exclude animal pests and allow vulnerable wildlife to thrive.


This project will restore drier land so wildlife can retreat during flood events. It will extend the number of native species that can live within the city limits.

Christchurch is the only major urban centre in the country without an ecosanctuary

We propose to transform the 120ha Travis Wetland and 50ha of the Burwood red zone into an eco-sanctuary that will be surrounded by an a sensitively integrated and publicly accessible 8km predator-proof fence.

The connecting wildlife bridge will allow groundhugging fauna to move freely between the wetland and the drier red zone.

It will create a safe haven from which species can move through the red zone (the ‘halo effect’) and into the wider urban area, just as is happening in the Wellington suburbs from Zealandia.

Eco Sanctuary Halo map

Toitū te marae o Tane... Toitū te marae o Tangaroa... Toitū te iwi

Healthy lands, healthy waters and healthy people.

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