Coordinates: 41°17′S 174°46′E / 41.283°S 174.767°E /
Wellington Region (Greater Wellington)
Region of New Zealand
Upper Hutt City
Kapiti Coast District
Tararua District (part)
8,049 km2 (3,108 sq mi)
Population (June 2017)
64/km2 (170/sq mi)
• Summer (DST)
Wellington Region (also known as Greater Wellington) is a local
government region of
New Zealand that occupies the southern end of the
North Island. The region covers an area of 8,049 square kilometres
(3,108 sq mi), and is home to a population of 513,900 (June
The region is named after Wellington, New Zealand's capital city and
region's seat. The
Wellington urban area, including the cities of
Lower Hutt and Upper Hutt, accounts for 80
percent of the region's population; Other major urban areas include
the Kapiti conurbation of Waikanae, Paraparaumu, Raumati and
Paekakariki, and the town of Masterton.
1 Local government
5.1 Production and income
5.2 Culture and identity
9 See also
11 External links
The region is administered by the
Wellington Regional Council, which
uses the promotional name Greater
Wellington Regional Council. The
council region covers the conurbation around the capital city,
Wellington, and the cities of Lower Hutt, Porirua, and Upper Hutt,
each of which has a rural hinterland; it extends up the west coast of
the North Island, taking in the coastal settlements of the Kapiti
Coast District, which includes the southern fringe of the area
commonly known as
Horowhenua and the town of Otaki; east of the
Rimutaka Range it includes three largely rural districts containing
most of Wairarapa, covering the towns of Masterton, Carterton,
Greytown, Featherston and Martinborough. The
Council was first formed in 1980 from a merger of the Wellington
Regional Planning Authority and the
Wellington Regional Water
A proposal made in 2013 that nine territorial authorities amalgamate
to form a single supercity met substantial local opposition and was
abandoned in June 2015.
The governing body of the regional council is made up of 13
councillors, representing six constituencies:
Wellington – 5 councillors
Kapiti Coast – 1
Porirua-Tawa – 2
Lower Hutt – 3
Upper Hutt – 1
Wairarapa – 1
In common usage the terms
Wellington region and Greater
not clearly defined, and areas on the periphery of the region are
often excluded. In its more restrictive sense the region refers to the
cluster of built-up areas west of the Tararua ranges. The much more
sparsely populated area to the east has its own name, Wairarapa, and a
centre in Masterton. To a lesser extent, the
Kapiti Coast is sometimes
excluded from the region. Otaki in particular has strong connections
Horowhenua District to the north.
Wellington City mayor
Celia Wade-Brown is not in favour of the
region adopting a 'super city' type council like the one in Auckland,
though is in favour of reducing the number of councils from nine to
"three or four".
The Māori who originally settled the region knew it as Te Upoko o te
Ika a Māui, meaning "the head of Māui's fish". Legend recounts that
Kupe discovered and explored the region in about the tenth century.
The region was settled by Europeans in 1839 by the New Zealand
Wellington became the capital of
Wellington Province upon the
creation of the province in 1853, until the Abolition of the Provinces
Act came into force on 1 Nov 1876.
Wellington became capital of
New Zealand in 1865, the third capital after Russell and Auckland.
A composite landsat-7 image of the southwestern part of the region
Population density at the 2006 census
The region occupies the southern tip of the North Island, bounded to
the west, south and east by the sea. To the west lies the Tasman Sea
and to the east the Pacific Ocean, the two seas joined by the narrow
and turbulent Cook Strait, which is 28 kilometres (17 mi) wide at
its narrowest point, between
Cape Terawhiti and Perano Head in the
The region covers 7,860 square kilometres (3,030 sq mi), and
extends north to Otaki and almost to
Eketahuna in the east.
Physically and topologically the region has four areas running roughly
parallel along a northeast–southwest axis:
The Kapiti Coast, a narrow strip of coastal plain running north from
Paekakariki. It contains numerous small towns, many of which gain at
least a proportion of their wealth from tourism, largely due to their
Rough hill country inland from the Kapiti Coast, formed along the same
major geologic fault responsible for the
Southern Alps in the South
Island. Though nowhere near as mountainous as the alps, the Rimutaka
and Tararua ranges are still hard country and support only small
populations, although it is in small coastal valleys and plains at the
southern end of these ranges that the cities of
Wellington and the
Hutt Valley are located.
The undulating hill country of the
Wairarapa around the Ruamahanga
River, which becomes lower and flatter in the south and terminates in
the wetlands around Lake
Wairarapa and contains much rich farmland.
Rough hill country, lower than the
Tararua Range but far less economic
than the land around the Ruamahanga River. This and the other hilly
striation are still largely forested.
On the Quartz Hill track
There are five parks owned by the regional council:
Battle Hill Farm Forest Park
Belmont Regional Park
East Harbour Regional Park
Kaitoke Regional Park
Queen Elizabeth Park
Aerial view of
Plimmerton, Paremata and Pauatahanui Inlet
Over three-quarters of the 513,900 people (June 2017) reside in the
four cities at the southwestern corner. Other main centres of
population are on the
Kapiti Coast and in the fertile farming areas
close to the upper
Ruamahanga River in the Wairarapa.
Along the Kapiti Coast, numerous small towns sit close together, many
of them occupying spaces close to popular beaches. From the north,
these include Otaki, Waikanae, Paraparaumu, the twin settlements of
Raumati Beach and Raumati South,
Paekakariki and Pukerua Bay, the
latter being a northern suburb of Porirua. Each of these settlements
has a population of between 2,000 and 10,000, making this moderately
Wairarapa the largest community by a considerable margin is
Masterton, with a population of almost 20,000. Other towns include
Featherston, Martinborough, Carterton and Greytown.
% of region
(Waikanae, Paraparaumu, Raumati, Paekakariki)
Production and income
The region is by a large margin the wealthiest in the country. The
most up-to-date estimates for regional GDP prepared by the Ministry
for Economic Development put it at $17.5 billion in the year to March
2004, $36,700 per capita, 19% more than the
Auckland Region ($30,750);
38% more than the poorest region, Northland ($26,600); and 3% more
than the second-highest region, Northern
South Island ($35,800).
At the 2006 census the region had the largest percentages of people in
the four highest income groupings ($40,001-$50,000: 8.9%,
$50,001-$70,000: 10.5%, $70,001-$100,000: 5.9% and $100,001+: 5.2%)
and the lowest percentage of residents in the 'loss' group
(0.37%). As at December 2007 people in the region has a
significantly higher average weekly income from all sources
($812/week) than other regions (18% more than second-placed Auckland,
In 2006 25.8% of employed Wellingtonians worked in professional
occupations and 14.3% in clerical occupations, the largest percentage
for each category of any region. Excluding 369 people in areas not
covered by an official region,
Wellington has the lowest percentage of
technicians and trades workers (10.6%), the lowest percentage of
machinery operators and drivers (4.1%) and the lowest percentage of
Culture and identity
Largest groups of overseas-born residents
The region is second only to
Auckland in many statistics related to
breadth of ethnicity. In the 2006 census
Wellington had the
second-highest Asian population (8.4%,
Auckland 18.9%) and the
second-highest Pacific Islander population (8.0%,
Around 25.3 percent of the
Wellington region's population was born
overseas, second only to
Auckland (39.1 percent) and on par with the
New Zealand average (25.2 percent). The British Isles is the largest
region of origin, accounting for 36.5 percent of the overseas-born
population in the region. Significantly, the
Wellington region is home
to over half of New Zealand's Tokelauean-born population.
Around 47.7 percent of Wellingtonians affiliate with Christianity and
6.1 percent affiliate with non-Christian religions, while 43.9 percent
Catholicism is the largest Christian denomination in
Wellington with 14.8 percent affiliating, while
Anglicanism is the
second-largest with 11.9 percent affiliating.
Hinduism (2.4 percent)
Buddhism (1.6 percent) are the largest non-Christian
Ethnic groups of
Wellington Region residents, 2013 census
New Zealand European
European (not further defined)
Cook Islands Maori
Middle Eastern/Latin American/African
Total people stated
Not elsewhere included
The region has the second-highest proportion of women at 51.52%
(Nelson 51.53%, West Coast 49.21%), age 16-29 48.86% with
at 49.11%, followed by Gisborne at 49.18%, contrasting with
Marlborough at 52.61%.
In 2006 21.1% of Wellingtonians had a degree, compared to 6.6% on the
West Coast, 17.7% for
Auckland and 14.5% for
Otago (though 0.97% of
Otago residents have doctorate level degrees, compared with 0.87% for
Wellington are equal lowest for "No
Qualification" at 18.1%.
Mobile phone use at 76.3% is exceeded only by
Waikato (75.3%). Access to the internet is 65.5%, highest
equal with Auckland, followed by Canterbury (61.3%). Wellingtonians
are least likely to have access to a fax machine (21.1%), after
GDP was estimated at US$19.3 billion in 2003, 15% of New Zealand
Main article: Public transport in the
Public transport in the Region is well developed compared to other
parts of New Zealand. It consists of buses, trolleybuses, trains,
cars, ferries and a funicular (the
Wellington Cable Car). It also
included trams until 1964. Buses and ferries are privately owned, with
the infrastructure owned by public bodies, and public transport is
often subsidised. The Regional Council is responsible for planning and
subsidising public transport. The services are marketed under the name
Wellington operates the metropolitan train network,
running from the
Wellington CBD as far as
Waikanae in the north and
Masterton in the east. In the year to June 2015, 36.41 million trips
were made by public transport with passengers travelling a combined
460.7 million kilometres, equal to 73 trips and 927 km per
Wellington region has the lowest rate of car ownership in New
Zealand; 11.7 percent of households at the 2013 census did not have
access to a car, compared to 7.9 percent for the whole of New Zealand.
The number of households with more than one car is also the lowest:
44.4 percent compared to 54.5 percent nationally.
From 2005 to 2015 there has been increase in the variety and number of
native forest bird species, as well as an increase in the range of
areas inhabited by these species, in Greater Wellington.
List of people from Wellington
^ a b Forbes, Michael (30 June 2015). "
Chris Laidlaw elected new GWRC
chairman, rates set at 9.8 per cent". The Dominion Post. Retrieved 1
^ a b c d "Subnational Population Estimates: At 30 June 2017
(provisional)". Statistics New Zealand. 24 October 2017. Retrieved 24
October 2017. For urban areas, "Subnational population estimates
(UA, AU), by age and sex, at 30 June 1996, 2001, 2006-16 (2017
boundary)". Statistics New Zealand. 24 October 2017. Retrieved 24
^ "The Local Government (
Wellington Region) Reorganisation Order
New Zealand Gazette: 2491 ff. 9 June 1989.
^ "Legal notices". Greater
Wellington Regional Council. Retrieved 3
Wellington Regional Council's constituencies". Archived
from the original on June 9, 2007. Retrieved 2008-05-08.
^ Parks Network Plan (PDF). Greater
Wellington Regional Council. 2011.
p. 10. Retrieved 3 May 2014.
^ Michael Forbes and Caleb Harris (9 June 2015). "Wellington
super-city scrapped due to lack of public support". The
^ "Council and Councillors". Greater
Wellington Regional Council.
Retrieved 14 January 2014.
^ "No 'super city' for
Wellington - mayor". 3 News NZ. January 28,
New Zealand Provinces 1848–77
Wellington Parks: Draft Regional Parks Management Plan
^ "Ministry of Economic Development Regional Economic Performance
Report". 2005-11-01. Retrieved 2008-05-08.
^ a b c d e "2006 Census Regional Summary Tables". 2007-07-03.
Archived from the original on 2007-11-24. Retrieved 2008-05-08.
^ "Nationwide Quarterly Review by Statistics New Zealand". 2008-03-25.
Archived from the original on November 21, 2008. Retrieved
^ a b "Birthplace (detailed), for the census usually resident
population count, 2001, 2006, and 2013 (RC, TA) – NZ.Stat".
Statistics New Zealand. Retrieved 23 January 2016.
^ a b "2013 Census QuickStats about culture and identity – data
tables". Statistics New Zealand. 15 April 2014. Retrieved 29 January
2016. Note some percentages (e.g. ethnicity, religion) may not
add to 100 percent as people could give multiple responses or object
^ "Ethnic group (total responses), for the census usually resident
population count, 2001, 2006, and 2013 Censuses (RC, TA, AU)".
Statistics New Zealand.
^ "Regional Gross Domestic Product". Statistics New Zealand. 2007.
Retrieved 18 February 2010.
Wellington Public Transport – Patronage". Greater
Wellington Regional Council. Retrieved 29 January 2016.
^ "2013 Census – transport and communications in New Zealand".
Statistics New Zealand. 3 February 2015. Retrieved 28 January
^ McArthur, Nikki; Harvey, Annette; Flux, Ian (October 2015). State
and trends in the diversity, abundance and distribution of birds in
Wellington City (PDF). Wellington: Greater
Council. Retrieved 18 January 2016.
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Semi-official map of territorial boundaries and links to their
Wellington Regional Council
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Bay of Plenty
* Governed by a unitary authority rather than a regional council