Our stormwater network

Stormwater is rainwater that flows across roofs, roads and driveways into the Council’s stormwater system of drains and culverts. 

The Council provides a public piped rainwater collection system (reticulated stormwater network) in urban areas throughout the district to minimise flooding and ensure that the health, welfare and safety - of both the environment and its people - are protected.

The public stormwater system collects stormwater runoff from roads and developed areas, including driveways and properties. It is collected by the kerb and channel, open manholes, catch pits and open drains. The untreated water is released directly into our rivers, streams or sea through a network of pipes and open drains to an outfall.  

Private stormwater system

A private stormwater system collects water runoff from a private property and directs it to the public piped system or an onsite disposal. Any stormwater collected outside the roadside carriage way edge (the white lines on the road) is a private issue. Landowners are responsible for maintaining these systems. Stormwater runoff is reduced where roof water is collected for drinking water and other uses. All private subdivisions require a stormwater system and probably some form of attenuation before it enters the public system. Examples of attenuation are a pond or water tank with an orifice-controlled outlet.

Reporting an issue

To report an issue relating to stormwater maintenance, drainage, culverts, water tables, and floodgate faults.

Call the Council at 0800 920 029 or tell us using our online form. We need the following information:

  • Contact details
  • Where is the problem located?  (Include Rapid number, culvert marker number, or nearest street address.)
  • Are any services being affected e.g. water supply, service pipes?
  • What type of damage has occurred?
  • How long has it been damaged?

New connection

How can I connect to the public stormwater system?

In order to keep Council’s stormwater systems working at their best, we need to regulate the amount of stormwater the system receives from private properties. It is important for us to know where and how the connection is made into our system, in case there is a problem in the future. 

If you are planning to connect a stormwater pipe from your property into the public system, please fill out an stormwater application form(PDF, 659KB) and email it to or post it to Private Bag 752, Kaikohe 0440.

Applications for stormwater connections and discharges require specific approval from the Stormwater Engineer in regard to all design aspects and construction. Applicants must state the expected changes in stormwater discharge rates, the effect on surrounding properties and effects on Council assets and networks.

What type of works does this include?

  • New stormwater connections
  • New subdivisions
  • New buildings of any type
  • New or upgraded entrances
  • New or upgraded private ways or right of ways
  • New roads or changes to an existing road
  • Changes to the area of permeable and impermeable surfaces
  • Changes to primary and secondary flow patterns.

Is your area at risk of flooding?

Far North Maps lets you see which areas are vulnerable to flooding. 

  1. Go to Far North Maps (opens in new window)
  2. Zoom into your town
  3. Click on the blue "I want to" button
  4. Navigate down to the floodplains layer and select the check box for each layer.

Urban drainage areas

What is urban drainage?

Urban drainage is a term for a town’s stormwater system. Most towns in Northland have some form of urban drainage to prevent flooding and remove surface water. For information on where we rate for urban drainage, please check our stormwater rating maps.

What is consented discharge?

Consented discharge is where the Far North District Council has approval from the Northland Regional Council to operate and discharge public stormwater to land or water. The majority of urban stormwater systems are required to have discharge consent, as they may contain contaminates which run off the road or off properties.

Land drainage

Land drainage aims to quickly remove rainwater from rural land, helping prevent flooding and reduce groundwater levels to protect farming and agricultural productivity.

How can I tell if I’m affected by the Land Drainage Areas?

On behalf of landowners, Council maintains a network of open, private drains around the northern area which help lower the ground water level, so farmers can use the productive land. These networks are called Land Drainage Areas.

Kaitaia drainage rating area(PDF, 605KB)

Northern drainage rating area(PDF, 421KB)