Described as the eighth wonder of the world, discover how Milford Sound Piopiotahi can be protected for future generations
Milford Sound Piopiotahi is the jewel in the crown of New Zealand’s tourist attractions. This glacier-carved fiord is a national treasure. However, while visitors continue to flock to this iconic destination, the current management of recreation and tourism along the Milford Corridor and at Milford Sound Piopiotahi required new thinking to protect its World Heritage status, cultural and conservation values, and overall visitor experience.
We, along with a diverse sub-consultant group, developed a masterplan to ensure the Milford Sound Piopiotahi experience will be both sustained and protected. Existing and future issues were identified, such as stresses on the road corridor, overcrowded visitor experience, compromise of conservation values, and limited acknowledgement of the local iwi (tribe) Ngāi Tahu’s identity and cultural heritage.
A vital aspect of the transformation was strengthening the partnership with Ngāi Tahu as mana whenua and mana moana (people of the land and sea). This meant early and ongoing engagement with them and understanding their fundamental importance as Fiordland's guardians. The masterplan was a way to acknowledge whakapapa (ancestors) and help to re-establish Piopiotahi’s wairua (spirit).
Using the vision statement of ‘Piopiotahi—New Zealand as it was, forever’ the masterplan focused around seven pillars that were used to create ten solutions for addressing the key issues identified.
The result? Government approval and funding has been received to implement the next phase, which includes forming an Establishment Board to assess the plan’s recommendations.
Want to know more? Read news stories Milford Sound Masterplan Released or Mastering a World Heritage Site, or this article: Harmonising Sustainability with Tourism to Protect Milford Sound.
At a Glance
- Award 2022
- NZ Planning Institute Best Practice Award—Strategic Planning & Guidance (with Boffa Miskell)
- Award 2022
- Resource Management Law Association Project Award (with Boffa Miskell)
- Award 2022
- Planning for Conservation of the Built & Natural Environment and Cultural Heritage w/ Boffa Miskell
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