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Auckland Council

Stormwater risks, requirements and responsibilities

Stormwater and development

If you are doing any sort of development, one of the factors you need to consider is stormwater.

Inadequate stormwater facilities place a constraint on development. For this reason, developers need to show how they will deal with stormwater run-off.

In urban environments, stormwater can create two major issues:

  • flooding, due to the volume of water, and
  • water pollution, due to potential contaminants the water is carrying.

Builders need to place barriers like silt fences and filter socks on and around sites where they work so that dirty water containing earth and sediment doesn't wash off the site and into drains.

How we manage stormwater

The stormwater network is crucial for managing the overflow of water on properties and streets when it rains. Managing stormwater ensures flooding and associated environmental problems are reduced as much as possible.

We map overland flow paths of rainwater, including rare heavy rainstorms. You can find out if your property is in an overland flow path by using our GeoMaps viewer or getting a Land Information Memorandum (LIM).

Stormwater and the Auckland Unitary Plan

The Auckland Unitary Plan (AUP) has adopted an Integrated Stormwater Management approach to maintain good water quality and improve it where it is degraded. The AUP includes rules on:

  • The diversion and discharge of stormwater.
  • The quality of stormwater.
  • The quantity (flow) of the stormwater.
  • You may need to obtain a resource consent for stormwater matters, such as:
    • the size of impervious area on your site
    • where the stormwater is being directed to
    • if the stormwater is coming from a high-contaminant generating car park or a high use road
    • if your site is located in a Stormwater Management Area.

Stormwater risks and requirements

Before you develop or purchase a site, make sure you are aware of any flood risks and stormwater requirements for that site:

Structures must comply with both the council and central government policy on flood hazards before we can issue a building consent. Consider these policies in the design of the stormwater system.

Stormwater network responsibilities

Auckland Council, Watercare, Auckland Transport and the landowner are responsible for their own assets. These can be pipes, manholes or drains depending on where they are.

See Who maintains watercourses.

Built assets

We own and maintains public pipes, manholes, catchpits and other assets that manage stormwater flow, quantity and quality. View the public stormwater network using our GeoMaps viewer.

However, landowners are responsible for maintaining assets on their property up to the point where it connects to the public assets. This can include roof gutters, downpipes, grates and catchpits.

Generally, we determine the point between public and private assets as one of these:

  • The connection to the public stormwater system regardless of the location or number of properties serviced.
  • The point where the service connection serves more than one property.
  • The point where the service connection crosses the property boundary.

This image shows an example of how stormwater assets are typically located and the points where responsibility changes from council to respective property owners. Click the image to see a larger version.

Watercare infrastructure

Watercare maintains the pipes that supply water. This includes drinking water and water for your bathrooms and laundry. They also handle enquiries about wastewater, including all wastes that go through household drains. See the Watercare website.

Auckland Transport infrastructure

Auckland Transport takes care of streets and outdoor infrastructure. This includes grates, berms, footpaths, street lights, road signs and bus shelters, among others. See the Auckland Transport website.