Shoreline Management Plans

Updated July 2022 - Public meetings to consult on our Shoreline Management Plan have now concluded. The Project Team will now prepare its final recommendations for Council consideration in September. 

The information gathered over the three-year project will contribute to long-term direction setting for the Thames-Coromandel District as we respond to the hazards of sea level rise. The plan will influence many aspects of life in our communities, across both public and private spheres, not just those areas that are controlled directly by TCDC.   

“What was particularly useful was the very localised knowledge that residents brought to the project – they know their environment and how the coastline behaves and that information is invaluable to our planning,” said Project Lead, Amon Martin. 

The next significant step is for the Plan to be considered by Council. If the Council adopts the SMP, an implementation plan will be required. This will require prioritisation and funding decisions. Some of these decisions will be made through our Council’s 2024 Long Term Plan.


Presentations from our final public meetings can be downloaded here.

Moanatairi 17 June Meeting Presentation

Thames 17 June Meeting Presentation

Whitianga 18 June Meeting Presentation 

Kūaotunu 18 June Meeting Presentation 

Pāuanui 19 June Meeting Presentation 

Whangamatā 26 June Meeting Presentation

Colville Meeting Presentation

Tairua Meeting Presentation

Te Puru Meeting Presentation

Important additional resources

You can download and view the interactive 20cm increment mapping for 1% AEP (1 in 100 year), 5% AEP (1 in 20 year) and king tide events here. Please right click the file label to open the maps. 

You can read the Coromandel Peninsula Coastal Protection Feasibility Study Summary here.


In April 2022 we held online meetings to update an initial group of our communities on our Shoreline Management Plans. 

Here are the links to online meeting recordings that have occurred:

Watch the recording of our Te Puru meeting - Tuesday 5 April.

Download the Te Puru meeting presentation here 

Watch the Tararu meeting - Wednesday 6 April

Download the Tararu meeting presentation here

Watch the Tairua meeting - Thursday 7 April

Download the Tairua meeting presentation her

Watch the Ōhuka (Brophy's) Beach meeting - Monday 11 April

Download the Ohuka (Brophy's) Beach meeting presentation here 

Watch the Whangamatā (south) meeting - Tuesday 12 April

Download the Whangamata meeting presentation here 

Watch the Pāuanui meeting - Wednesday 13 April

Download the Pauanui meeting presentation here 

Watch the Moanataiari meeting - Wednesday 27 April

Download the meeting presentation here

Watch the Kennedy Bay meeting - Tuesday 10 May

Watch the Wharekaho (Simpsons Beach) meeting - Wednesday 11 May

Watch the Cooks Beach meeting - Thursday 12 May

Once you have attended (or watched a recording of) a meeting or reviewed the adaptation pathways, you can provide your feedback by clicking on this link and using our feedback tool. 
Or you can email us at

The next step in our Shoreline Management Plan

Our Coromandel District communities will receive specific plans responding to the impacts of climate change in their area, as our Shoreline Management Plan project enters a new phase.

The three-year project is working to understand the inundation and erosion risks to our coastline and is due to conclude this year.

The Shoreline Management Plan Committee was given a project progress and proposed next steps update this week.

“Sea level rise is a huge challenge facing many Councils and for us it’s even more challenging given our geography and our 400 km of coastline,” says our Mayor Sandra Goudie, the Committee’s Co- Chair.

“This will require difficult and confronting conversations for some of our communities over the next few months, but we know that understanding the risks now, and planning ahead now, is the right thing to do.”

Adaptation pathways will be discussed with communities in a series of upcoming public meetings, beginning with online meetings to allow uncapped attendance during Omicron restrictions.

“The wide ranging implications of this project are real and will significantly influence the future world of our mokopuna and future generations,” says Co-Chair Paul Majurey. “The importance of the risks and responses mean that all voices need to be heard.”

The pathways being discussed are tailored to each section of our coastline. They range from options such as additional dune planting, through to defence structures such as stop banks and sea walls. In some areas, the pathways require communities to consider managed retreat from their current locations, once sea-level rise triggers are reached.

As part of the project, a feasibility study has also been undertaken into possible protection options for eight locations that are considered to be at imminent risk of coastal inundation. These are Thames, Moanataiari, Tararū, Te Puru, Colville, Kōpū, Whitianga and Tairua.

The study is a consultant’s high-level assessment, through a desktop exercise, on what defence options in these areas might indicatively cost in the next 100 years. This will help our communities decide if defending some areas of coastline with hard structures is a potential course of action.

“What we need to do now is talk to those communities about the full picture of information that we have assembled over our three-year project to confirm which solutions, costs and risk they think are appropriate,” says project lead Amon Martin.

“The reality is that for some of these communities, defence structures will either be too expensive or ineffective if we see anticipated levels of sea level rise over the next few decades. So we need to talk with them about things like raising floor levels, stopping new construction, and considering retreat from those areas of coastline over time.” 

Project background  

We have four Coastal Panels working to define and reduce the coastal flooding and erosion risks to our people, property and assets. 

This important work will decide which sustainable flood and coastal defence measures are appropriate for each of our four main geographic areas on the Peninsula.    

The coastal panels are now at the “what should we be doing” stage of the project.  

We need public input on the adaptation options for protecting and enhancing our coastline. These will allow us to adapt to the effect of coastal hazards. 

The options being considered range from soft solutions, such as dune restoration and wetland regeneration, to hard solutions such as stop banks, rock walls or managed retreat.

Key information for each area

Coastal hazards, risks, and proposed response.

You can find a summary of the predicted inundation and erosion hazards, as applicable, for each stretch of coastline on posters under each heading below, or on the four buttons to the right.

The hazards are based on 20cm Sea Level Rise increments and erosion in 2040, 2070, 2120 for a 1 in 100-year storm event - an event with a 1% annual exceedance probability (AEP). 

The posters include an assessment of the coastal erosion and inundation risks, and the proposed risk management and adaptation options and pathways.  

If there is no map for your stretch of coastline, there is little to no risk.


Whangapoua Harbour and Mercury Bay

If there is no map for your stretch of coastline, there is no or very little risk.

South East Coat - Tairua to Whangamata

If there is no map for your stretch of coastline, there is no or very little risk.

Thames Coast

If there is no map for your stretch of coastline, there is no or very little risk.

Coromandel Coast to Kennedy Bay

If there is no map for your stretch of coastline, there is no or very little risk.

Important additional resources

You can download and view the interactive 20cm increment mapping for 1% AEP (1 in 100 year), 5% AEP (1 in 20 year) and king tide events here.

Please right click the file label to open the maps. 

Click here to explore our interactive Risk Assessment Summary map.

The factsheets and posters from open days can be found below:

How do we plan to manage the shoreline?

New Zealand's Coastal Policy Statement 2010 recognises that the changing climate will increase risks to life and property within the coastal zone and requires Council's to proactively manage coastal hazards over the next 100 years.

The approach we have adopted is based on the Ministry for the Environment’s 2017Coastal hazards and climate change: Guidancefor local government (illustrated in the cycle above).We are currently at the ‘WHAT MATTERS MOST?’ stage, where we are using Community Open Days and Coastal Panel input (Step 3 - values and objectives) to understand what matters most incombination with the coastal hazard information (from Step 2) to define vulnerability and risk (Step 4). This will allow us to then be able to identify appropriate community-led adaptation optionsand pathways. Ultimately, this process seeks to enable resilient coastal communities to enjoy ourcoastline now and into the future.

Our first co-governance committee for our Shoreline Management Plan (SMP) project was held in October 2020, involving our Council and the Pare Hauraki collective. You can watch the full unedited recording of the meeting here.

This is a milestone, three-year project to prepare adaptive SMPs for large sections of our coastline by 2022.

“The project is all about helping our communities and coasts adapt to coastal hazards through site-specific plans for the entire length of our coastline, including our offshore islands,” Mayor Sandra says.

Mayor Sandra Goudie welcomed the co-governance relationship with iwi and the guidance for this long-term project.

“This is an important journey we are embarking on together - one that will be made up of many small steps along the way. I look forward to this committee getting involved and working together as we come up with community-led adaptive solutions,” Mayor Sandra says.

“Our Council, together with Matamata-Piako and Hauraki district councils and the Pare Hauraki Collective will be working as a collective team,” Mayor Sandra says.

Co-governance through this SMP committee of Council reflects the importance of having iwi involved at all the various levels of the project, including the Coastal Panels that have been set up to cover our coastline in the following areas:

  • Thames and the Thames Coast
  • Coromandel Town Coast to Kennedy Bay
  • Whangapoua Harbour and the Mercury Bay Coast
  • South-East Coast (Tairua through to Whangamata)

As the project progresses, the committee will meet bi-annually or as required.

You can read more about our Coastal Panels including their meeting agendas and minutes here.

Shoreline Management Plans Overview

Each SMP will be presented to Council for adoption and eventual integration into relevant strategies, policies or actions within the Long-Term Plan or District Plan.

Our Council is establishing close working relationships with partners and key stakeholders including mana whenua, Waikato Regional Council (WRC), New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) and the Department of Conservation (DOC) in this project.

Following on from the adoption of our Coastal Management Strategy and Coastal Hazards Policy in 2018, our Council is now developing Shoreline Management Plans (SMPs). This is a three-year project to  define the flooding and erosion risks to people and the social, cultural, economic and natural environment across all parts of our coastline over the next century and beyond.

As we develop these plans, we have a valuable opportunity to understand our coastal environment more holistically, including the connections between people, catchments and waterways, landscapes, estuaries and beaches.

We will be examining the interaction between the way in which the coast behaves and is likely to evolve, and the way in which the coast is used and valued in each community.

Each SMP will:

  • be specific to a stretch of coast
  • identify what’s at stake and why
  • consider a number of different future scenarios of how coasts and communities may change
  • set objectives for the management of the coastal environment
  • be action-oriented and clearly link the actions of today with those we might need to take in the future
  • work through viable solutions
  • plot a course towards those solutions, making sure we use our collective knowledge and observations of the coast to keep track of our progress and enable a change of course if necessary.

In May 2019, our Council appointed a consortium led by international consultancy Royal HaskoningDHV to support the development of our Shoreline Management Plans. 

Community information meetings were held during August 2019 and January/February 2021.

While plans to deal with coastal change have previously been developed in a couple of other locations in New Zealand, the work our Council is doing is distinct in that we are developing SMPs across our whole district through active involvement of all key community stakeholders along our beautiful yet fragile coastline.

Read more about what’s involved with our Coastal Management Strategy here.