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Tāngata Whenua


The history, culture, and values of tāngata whenua are part of what makes the western Bay of Plenty a special part of New Zealand. The enduring ancestral relationship that tāngata whenua have with their whenua, wai, and taonga is central to their identity as mana whenua and key to their roles and responsibilities as kaitiaki over their respective rohe (areas ofinterest).

Tāngata whenua have been a partner in SmartGrowth since its inception in 2000. This partnership has been exercised through membership on the governance group and the creation of the Combined Tāngata Whenua Forum.

However, progress with Treaty settlements, the emergence of new approaches to spatial planning, and increased expectations from government and tāngata whenua regarding co-management of natural and physical resources, means SmartGrowth needs to proactively work in partnership with tāngata whenua to continue to achieve social, cultural, environmental, and economic objectives, alongside those of other partners.

Today, tāngata whenua are one of the four key foundation partners to the SmartGrowth partnership at a governance level, and management level through the Combined Tāngata Whenua Forum (CTWF) and Tū Pakari Advisors.

Combined Tāngata Whenua Forum

Tāngata whenua are one of the four key foundation partners to the SmartGrowth partnership at a governance level, and management level through the Combined Tāngata Whenua Forum (CTWF) and Tū Pakari advisors.

The CTWF is a joint forum comprising representatives from the two Western Bay of Plenty District Council Forums (Te Kāhui Mana o Tauranga Moana and Te Ihu o Te Waka o Te Arawa) as well as Te Rangapū Mana Whenua o Tauranga Moana Forum at Tauranga City Council.

The collective vision and outcomes of the CTWF are outlined below:

Add link to Terms of Reference  

Add button/link to Meeting Agendas/Minutes/Presentations(all)


Supporting the CTWF are the two SmartGrowth Tū Pakariadvisors. They are engaged annually to provide strategic and technical advice and support to the CTWF and partner agencies as well as the four tāngata whenua governance representatives currently appointed to the SmartGrowth Leadership Group (SLG).

Add button/link Tū Pakari E-pānui

Tāngata Whenua Perspectives on Growth Management

Tāngata whenua perspectives on growth management extend beyond cultural matters or wellbeing and instead inter-twine across the social,environmental, cultural and economic spheres:

Priority Focus 1: Development of Māori Land and Papakāinga

Developing Māori land is time consuming and challenging because of the large number of people and organisations involved with separate processes and compliance standards. The process recognises the joint customary ownership complexities and nuances of Māori freehold land that create additional hurdles and costs for whānau to meet compared with the relative ease of building homes on an individual freehold title.

The SmartGrowth Tu Pakari team are working on a number of initiatives to support development of Māori Land and Papakāinga:

Direct engagement with Māori Land Trusts and identifying housing aspirations.

  • Significant focus this year on connecting with Māori Land Trusts and identifying housing aspirations.
  • Facilitating the formation of Ara Rau Tāngata Inc Society.
  • Connecting engagement outcomes with the Tāngata Whenua Spatial Planning work programme.  
  • Active involvement within the SmartGrowth Housing Action Plan and Priority Development Area working groups.


Key resources: Te Keteparaha mō ngā Papakāinga (MāoriHousing Toolkit)

The Māori Housing Toolkit is a step-by-step guidedesigned to assist Māori to develop papakāinga proposals (development plan) onmultiple owned Māori land. The concept of papakāinga is not new and hastraditionally been associated with Māori housing in a Marae setting. Papakāingaincludes other activities such as: kōhanga reo, kura kaupapa, health clinic,horticulture or agriculture land uses, sports and/or recreational areas, urupāand heritage sites etc.


Priority Focus 2: Tāngata Whenua Spatial Planning

The goal of Tāngata Whenua Spatial Planning (TWSP) is to collect, collate, analyse, map and document the future aspirations of tāngata whenua in relation to the Western Bay of Plenty sub-region. We will need to link with hapū, iwi, marae committees and Māori Land entities to answer the following:

1.      What are the key values or principals that underpin and guide our spatial planning?

2.      What will the sub-region look like in the long term, from a tāngata whenua perspective?

3.      What is the tāngata whenua strategic direction or vision for the sub-region?

4.      What are the steps required to achieve this strategic direction or vision?

The outputs for this project will be used to guide and influence:

  • Future SmartGrowth Strategies and Plans and investment by local and central government.
  • Projects and work programmes led by hapū and Iwi within their respective rohe (e.g. hapū/iwi management plans).
  • The review of, and future changes to, the City and District Plans.
  • Future engagement and/or capability building with tāngata whenua.

Research & Resources - Tāngata Whenua

Also include the following UFTI reports

And the following link to Iwi and Hapū Management Plans