H2OurHealth a finalist in LGNZ EXCELLENCE Awards

7/06/2019 12:00 a.m.

​​H2O Health project work site

Waitaki District Council’s ‘H2Our Health – Waitaki Water for Connected Communities’ project is a finalist in the 2019 Local Government New Zealand (LGNZ) EXCELLENCE Awards.

The awards, now in their sixth year, recognise and celebrate the key leadership role local government plays within communities around the country.

The council is a finalist in the EXCELLENCE Award for Economic Well-being for the construction of a 34-kilometre pipeline from Oamaru to Hampden to supply safe and reliable drinking water.

Mayor for Waitaki, Gary Kircher said, “Getting through to this stage in itself is a great acknowledgement of the quality of the project and the special nature of the community, council and countractor engagement necessary to make it happen.”

The award criteria is for a project that enhances the economic well-being of its community; is responsible for sustained improvements in performance while building organisational capability; and/or demonstrates strong adaptive ability to ensure effective performance in different contexts over time.

The judges commended the initiative as a “good strategic response to a challenging problem that was not only good for its current community but also provided a platform for future population and economic growth”.

LGNZ President Dave Cull said being named as a finalist is a significant achievement and reflects strong leadership and the innovative work being delivered by councils across the country.

“These EXCELLENCE Awards demonstrate the value local government provides to community, economic development, infrastructure and the environment,” said Mr Cull.

“The sector should be incredibly proud of its achievements as we celebrate these outstanding projects. The finalist projects are real examples of how local government delivers exemplary value and services to New Zealanders in a collaborative and inclusive way.”

Judges for the awards are former Wellington Mayor Dame Kerry Prendergast, distinguished diplomat and public servant Sir Maarten Wevers, and Executive Director of the New Zealand Initiative, Dr Oliver Hartwich.

Category winners will be announced at a gala dinner during the LGNZ Conference, to be held in Wellington on 8 July 2019.


The 14 finalists for the LGNZ EXCELLENCE Awards 2019 are:

  • Hurunui District Council: Taking the Plunge – The Story of HDC and the Waiau Pool – A post-earthquake project to successfully rebuild the Waiau School and Community Pool.
  • Kapiti Coast District Council: Dudley Creek – Youth Development Centre Initiative – This project addressed young people’s needs for space and activities to connect and support them in their community.
  • Napier City Council: Andersen Park Playground – A new playground that caters to all abilities and all ages featuring New Zealand’s tallest playground tower, a wheelchair accessible mini-tower, climbing and swing structures, water play, functional artwork and interactive elements.
  • Palmerston North City Council – Festival of Cultures – An annual weeklong event celebrating diversity and encouraging celebration and connection through music, film, performance, cultural dress, craft and food.

  • Hastings District Council – Te Ara Kahikatea – Whakatu Arterial Link: A journey of cultural inclusiveness and community empowerment – The construction of an arterial route improving the district’s economic and social well-being, following extensive community consultation.
  • Thames-Coromandel District Council – Whitianga Town Centre Upgrade: Stage One – This project is the first stage of upgrading the town centre to a mixed-use space, involving the renewal of underground infrastructure, widening footpaths, landscaping, town square and plaza installation, and a playground upgrade.
  • Wellington City Council – Wellington Waterfront – The 18-year transformation of Wellington’s waterfront to become the gateway to Wellington. The waterfront is now a multi-use space, harnessing award-winning design and architecture with heritage and culture.
  • Waitaki District Council – H2OurHealth – Waitaki Water for Connected Communities – The construction of a 34-kilometre pipeline from Oamaru to Hampden to supply safe and reliable drinking water.

  • Hamilton City Council – Helping New Zealanders See the Light – The installation of 13,000 customised LED streetlights which has reduced costs to the city and significantly improved both road safety and environmental outcomes.
  • Taranaki Regional Council – Riparian Management Programme – A large-scale restorative freshwater programme supporting native habitats and improved ecological health.
  • Thames-Coromandel District Council – The Coromandel Electric Vehicle Touring Loop – A network of fast charging stations at key points around the Coromandel, putting the entire district in range of electric vehicle travel.

  • Gisborne District Council – Tupapa – Our Stand. Our Story – A bilingual, multimedia resource developed with local iwi to tell the region’s story: a dual heritage of great navigators and first arrivals in New Zealand.
  • Hamilton City Council – Maangai Māori – Creating History in Hamilton – A project designed to give Māori a strong and meaningful voice in running the city of Hamilton.
  • Wellington City Council – Visa Wellington on a Plate – Visa Wellington on a Plate is New Zealand’s largest culinary festival celebrating food, community and culture while supporting Wellington’s restaurants using local Wellington produce.
Page reviewed: 07 Jun 2019 2:07pm