The proposed scheme being investigated for feasibility involves building a dam at one or more sites to provide reservoirs from which water could be distributed for a range of uses including:
- irrigating up to 30,000ha of the Wairarapa valley
- increasing reliability of existing irrigation (12,000ha) and frost fighting
- supplementing low summer river and stream flows
- supplementing town water supply
- recreational activities
- stock drinking water
- electricity generation
Infrastructure for the scheme would consist of one or more storage reservoirs and a distribution network to deliver water to customers.
The two proposed reservoir locations are situated at Black Creek in the Kaituna area west of Masterton and Tividale, north-east of Masterton. The schemes could be staged depending upon the demand for purchasing irrigation water from farmers. and from other potential users.
Investigations to date have narrowed storage options from 243 to 2.
The map shows the location of the two proposed sites and the broad area that could be irrigated.
Water for irrigation would be available for farmers and growers in the catchment area via pipes to the farm gate. Water Wairarapa has been talking with local iwi and a range of business and community interests about other opportunities made possible by having a reliable source of stored water.