April 09, 2014
Grace win blow to road plans
Land associated with one of the most significant rangatira in the lower North Island has been protected the from road builders.
The Environment Court has ruled that the New Zealand transport Agency must halt its attempt to seize ancestral land at Waikanae for the Kapiti Expressway.
Writer Patricia Grace was handed down the land from her great-great-grandfather Wiremu Parata Te Kakakura, whose gifts of land in the 19th century did much to establish Waikanae and the infrastructure of the region.
The court says the proposed taking was not fair, sound or reasonably necessary, and the road can be built on land already owned by the crown.
It took into account the fact Mrs Grace has surrendered ownership of the land by turning it into a Maori reservation so it can be retained for future generations.
Crown lawyer Malcolm Parker says changing the route could cost taxpayers an extra $16 million, but Mrs Grace says that’s the cost of flawed processes and a lack of consultation in the beginning.
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