Category Archives: News

Stunning drone footage highlights Okura values threatened by development

Okura estuary from the air and under water - showcasing the marine life, endangered birds, and stunning landscape and recreational values that are still under threat by development. Take a virtual walk through this special coastal forest, see it "like the godwit flies" , and hear visitors describe why they support our fight to keep greedy development away.
Your support is still critically important: donate on our givealittle page

Calling anyone willing to help – Meeting Okura Hall 4pm Sunday 13 November


If you can help in organising events like, movie nights or dinners, helping with selling raffle tickets by organising a group or selling them yourself, cooking, baking, phoning or organising Okura Needs You. We need you to help raise funds to Save Okura. If you have any other fundraising activities you can think of bring them along and our dedicated team will help get them going.

We will be showing the brand new “ David and Goliath” movie that showcases the Okura Estuary.
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Please Donate to Save the Marine Reserve

Dear Supporters,

A few days ago we saw a fur seal frolicking at the mouth of the Okura Estuary! Sadly, it’s not good news for the plight of this lovely seal. Last week we shared the upsetting news that Todd Property Group will be going to the Environment Court to try to force through intensive development on the shores of the Estuary and the Long Bay Okura Marine Reserve.

In response, this week, the Long Bay Okura Great Park Society lodged an appeal against Todd Property’s development.

Now we really need your help to raise the funds for our Court costs. If you haven’t already, please assist us by making a donation to the Society’s Givealittle page
Donate on Givealittle

We believe our expenses in the Environment Court will be in the range of $300,000. If all of our supporters put in $100 this would be an amazing contribution to these costs.

Many thanks for your help!

Developers Pursue Urbanisation – Okura Estuary Under Threat


Dear Supporters,

Just when we thought Okura Estuary was saved from urban development, landowner, Okura Holdings Ltd (Todd Property Group), has struck again by appealing the Auckland Council’s decision not to allow intensive development on the shores of the Estuary and the Long Bay Okura Marine Reserve.

Despite the Auckland Council rejecting Okura Holdings Unitary Plan proposal to develop the southern side of the Estuary in an intensive 750-1000 unit housing development, the developer isn’t respecting Council’s decision and is relentlessly driving for urbanisation to go ahead at a devastating cost to the environment.

This shocking news could spell certain doom for the future of the Marine Reserve and the wildlife that lives there. In the continuation of an epic David versus Goliath saga, the Long Bay Okura Great Park Society now has no option but to take on the developer in the Environment Court.

We have really appreciated your support before and now ask for your help again in the Estuary’s hour of need.

Please help us in two ways:

Make a donation to the Society’s Givealittle page
Donate on Givealittle
We believe our expenses in the Environment Court will be in the range of $300,000. If all of our supporters put in $100 this would be an amazing contribution to these costs.

Come to our ‘Meet the Candidates’ event this Sunday and implore our potential Mayors and Albany Ward candidates to keep up the fight to protect the Estuary.
Details at 'Meet the Candidates' Event

Now that the developer has declared that it will pursue financial gain at any cost the Society vows to continue the fight to protect the waters and environment of the Okura Estuary so that people can continue to enjoy this spectacular landscape.

Our Convenor, Chris Bettany says, “We are incredulous that Todd Property is obstinately continuing to pursue development. Urbanisation of the area will profit a few but at the cost of the destruction of a precious and rare ecosystem, currently enjoyed by hundreds of thousands of people per year.”

Auckland Council’s reasons for not allowing urbanisation included the harmful effects of heavy metal contamination and sedimentation run off on the health of the Marine Reserve.

Marine Scientist and Marine Reserve Specialist, Dr Roger Grace agrees with the Council’s decision, “Okura Coast developer’s profit-driven quest will add further silt and other environmental pressures to an already stressed Marine Reserve and it is simply unacceptable”.

For the Society the fight is very much a classic David versus Goliath tale. It’s pledging to do all it can to make sure this wonderful environment is preserved and needs your help to continue.

Many thanks for your continued support.

The Long Bay Okura Great Park Society Team

Further Background

The Okura Estuary and Long Bay Okura Marine Reserve have long been under threat by greedy developers wanting to cash up on the benefits of locating an urban development in an extremely beautiful and desirable coastal environment close to Auckland. Over the course of 30 years Community Groups have been fighting to protect the area and two previous Environment Court hearings have ruled that the Okura Estuary and Marine Reserve is too precious to be urbanised.

Todd Property purchased the Okura land subsequent to the second Environment Court hearing knowing full well that it could not be urbanised, however they are determined to push development through. Now in this new battle, the Unitary Plan process, the Long Bay Okura Great Park Society has fought against Todd Property, to preserve the Estuary and its environment in an unspoilt state.

A combination of features makes the setting of the Okura Estuary unique in New Zealand. It’s just 20 minutes north of downtown Auckland, is ecologically significant, and pods of orca and dolphins are often seen in the mouth of the estuary. It’s a critically important habitat for rare shore birds such as the Variable Oyster Catcher, the summer feeding ground for migratory birds including the godwit, and a successful nesting area for the critically endangered New Zealand dotterel.

On the northern side of the Estuary lies the Okura Bush Scenic Reserve, a native coastal forest, home to 500-year-old Kauri and Puriri trees that is enjoyed by more than 70,000 visitors a year who walk the track that runs from Redvale to Stillwater. On the south-eastern side sits the Long Bay Regional Park with a visitor count of 1.4 million each year.

Sign the Petition Now Help Save the Okura Estuary

The Okura Estuary – the last estuary on urban Auckland’s eastern coastline unsullied by urban development – is a special haven to the bird and marine wildlife that lives there. However, all this stands to be destroyed by the Auckland Unitary Plan Hearings Panel’s decision to allow urban development in the area. Please let the Council know that you want the Estuary saved by signing the Long Bay Okura Great Park Society’s petition at
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