More than 14 years after the resource consents were issued, a wind farm near Napier looks set to finally be built.

State-owned electricity company Meridian holds two resource consents to build wind farms on neighbouring sites on the Maungahururu Range, roughly 34km northwest of Napier.

The consents were originally issued in 2005 to Hawke's Bay Wind Farm and Unison Networks for up to 32 turbines and 15 turbines respectively.

Meridian purchased the consents in 2010 and 2011, and combined them to form one site, with the consents extended till 2023.


It is now calling for a Registration of Interest (ROI) for contractors to build it.

A Meridian spokesperson said the delay has taken so long because it didn't see the project as a demand at the time.

"Since we purchased the consents, electricity demand has been flat but we're now starting to see evidence of demand growing. Therefore it's timely to look at the project again."

The spokesperson said nothing was confirmed and they would go through a process before committing to the project.

"The ROI is one of the many steps we take in our preparation phase – it does not mean we are in a position to confirm that we will construct this project yet."

If things do go to plan, Meridian said it was hoping to then start construction on the site early next year.

"If we get to the stage when we are in a position to commence construction, then it will likely be at the beginning of 2020, and with any decision to build subject to a final Meridian Board approval."

According to the consent any turbine built on the site can have a maximum base height of 85m and a vertically extended blade height of 130m.


Once contractors have submitted statements of interest and ability by August 9, Meridian will then create a shortlist of prospective options.

A provisional timetable stated that a preferred contractor would be notified in early October and the contract awarded in December.

Meridian presently has seven wind farms in New Zealand and Australia as well as 10 hydro schemes.