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Work in a Stream, River or Lake

Information for resource applications for works in, on, under or over the bed of a river or lake resource consent such as erecting a bridge or culvert, or works needed to construct a dam.

Work in a Stream, River or Lake

If you intend to undertake works in, on, under or over the bed of a river or lake resource consent is often required. Consents can be required for a range of different activities at many different scales, for example, erecting a bridge or culvert, or works needed to construct a dam.  

Before you apply

Before you apply, please read:

Please note that different rules apply to consents within the coastal environment governed by the Hawke’s Bay Regional Coastal Environment Plan.

Technical Information – Work in a Stream River or Lake

the Regional Council has prepared guidelines about works in waterways in waterways which should be used to guide all applications -

You will also require a resource consent to undertake works within 6 metres of a flood control or drainage scheme managed by a council (eg, Hawke’s Bay Regional Council, or local District Council). It is important that the council responsible for the scheme has an opportunity to check out what you propose to do, and confirm that it is not going to undermine the ability of the flood scheme to continue to protect against flooding. 

Common Types of Land Use Resource Consents

  • Structure (C): To construct/erect or alter a structure (eg. a bridge or culvert) in/on/over the bed of a river or lake
  • Excavation (E): To excavate the bed of a river or lake
  • Depositing (D): To deposit (eg. rocks or soil) in/on/over the bed of a river or lake (this is often done as part of work to realign streams)

Expert Help

Land use consents can be a complex and tricky process. It is likely you will need to engage an engineer to design any structure you wish to construct/erect, and if the works you propose will affect a large area, then you may need to engage other experts such as ecologists to assess what the impact of your activity is likely to be on the waterway. 

Guidance Notes

Please read the relevant guidance notes to assist you in filling out the application form -

Application Forms & Deposit

Applications can be lodged via email to the or physically to any of our offices, please check the front page of your applications Form A for full lodgement instructions.

Contact Us

 You can contact the Consents Advisor +64 6 835 9200 with any questions about the consenting process.

A resource consent is a legal document. Keep it in a safe place and check it regularly to be sure you are fully aware of conditions.

Consents Telarc


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