7 Mar 2017

Ambitious Taranaki marae plans put on hold

4:29 pm on 7 March 2017

Plans to build a $4.5 million marae in New Plymouth have been put on hold.

Shaun Keenan says he hopes the marae will become a hub for the wider community.

Ngā Motu Marae project coordinator Shaun Keenan at the proposed marae site in 2014. Photo: Laura Maxwell

The Ngāti Te Whiti Whenua Tōpu Trust had hoped to open the Ngā Motu Marae in June this year but it has run out of funds.

Trustee Peter Moeahu said it had spent $700,000 developing the project and the coffers were empty.

"We just haven't been able to raise the funds that we've needed and, as well as draining our own resources, we've just had to have a rethink."

Mr Moeahu said the Te Ātiawa hapū still hoped to complete the project at Ngā Motu Beach near Port Taranaki.

He said funding could come from a combination of the trust and philanthropic sources.

The marae would be Ngāti Te Whiti's first in the city since the 1800s.