The Western Ring Route motorway project extends State Highway 20 (SH20) from Mt. Roskill to SH16 (Waterview Connection) and upgrades the existing State Highway 16 (SH16) corridors with the final Lincoln to Westgate project scheduled to be completed in 2019.
The project was lodged with the Environmental Protection Authority (EPA) as a Road of National Significance.
As part of an NZTA technical review team, Bioresearches was commissioned to provide ecological impact assessments, management plans and specialist advice. These assessments included marine, freshwater and terrestrial components including vegetation, reptiles and birds.
Detailed and comprehensive field assessments were completed along SH16 between the Great North Road Interchange and Westgate.
Several botanical features were identified that required specific mitigation and conservation. Monitoring and assessments of the stream ecology of waterways traversed by the route were carried out.
The ecology of the Marine Reserve and estuarine creeks traversed by the route was assessed, including maritime vegetation, marine invertebrates and shellfish, sediment grain size and sediment chemistry. A detailed survey of coastal birds in the affected area of Marine Reserve and local terrestrial and wetland birds (eg fernbird and banded rail) was completed.
Evidence was prepared and presented at the Board of Inquiry for the Waterview Connection regarding avifauna. Ecological evidence was also prepared and presented at the Consent Hearings for SH16 (Te Atatu to Westgate).
Presently, Bioresearches is completing the post construction marine monitoring of fish populations in the Motu Manawa Pollen Island Marine Reserve: Winter 2018 and Summer 2019.