Chapter Eight of the Wiri Spatial Structure (SSP) Plan HIA report provides reflections and initial evaluation results for the HIA. It is intended that as the SSP progresses further evaluative questions will to be posed to assess the effectiveness and influence of the HIA (recognising that these questions will be more relevant for the 2–5 year timeframe).
The chapter notes the key strength of this HIA as the way it was able to work effectively in partnership with a range of agencies and organisations, building on the strength of the relationships established through the Wiri Improvement Project. Other strengths include the engagement in the Wiri SSP at an early stage: strong buy-in from the organisations taking part; and a general acceptance that the environment of Wiri plays a substantial part in the health and wellbeing of its residents, and that joint working across sectors is crucial to achieving health gains.
Healthy Cities, MCC with support of collaborative organisations advocated for HIA to be a part of standard practice in urban planning and policy design. This is still in process, but the willingness of urban design to collaborate on the HIA is a major strength of the project. This project has helped to strengthen the case for developing a Healthy Cities Advisory Group to open a pathway for embedding HIA into the new unitary council. We believe this project provides a good example of how HIA and Healthy Cities initiatives can support activities of local government across New Zealand.
This process embraced the principles of Kaupapa Māori research by way of centralising Māori concerns, setting out to make a positive difference for Māori, promoting equity, supporting Māori determination and employing a bottom up approach. Similarly, the project also actively sought the involvement of Pacific people, and successfully engaged with them.