Renewing our sea defences

8 Sep 2023

Wellington Airport is investigating options for renewing our seawalls and defences which protect vital infrastructure against erosion and inundation.

These coastal defences were established between 50 and 70 years ago. Engineering advice and peer review has confirmed they are reaching the end of their natural lifespans and need replacing.

This work is essential to increase our resilience and adaption to climate change, given that sea levels are rising and the frequency and severity of storms is likely to increase.

As well as protecting the airport, they also protect Moa Point Road, Moa Point Road tunnel, stormwater infrastructure and major sewage pipes to the Moa point wastewater treatment plant which treats most of Wellington’s sewage.

The three main areas of our coastal defences (marked below) are the Southern seawall, Western seawall and Lyall Bay breakwater.


Further detail is available in this publication here, and more detailed designs of the options are available in this presentation which were discussed at two recent public meetings.

Thank you to everyone who gave feedback on the initial options in person or online via our survey which has now closed.

Further research and consultation will be undertaken before final options are selected and resource consents applied for, with the Southern seawall the first priority.

Please feel free to send us any questions, comments or feedback via