Review of the Walking Access Act 2008

Find out about this review, why it's happening, and who is involved. 


  • December 2018: Workshops with a range of stakeholders to do some early scoping of the issues.
  • April and May 2019: Public consultation.
  • September 2019: Review completed.

We'll be updating this web page as the review progresses.

About the review

The review of the Walking Access Act 2008 is mandatory. It's written in the Act that a review must be held after 10 years.

The Ministry for Primary Industries (MPI) will be assessing what changes might be needed to the Act – both for now and for the future of public access.  This includes access to the outdoors in cities, towns, rural areas and further afield, and access to wāhi tapu and other areas of cultural significance.

The review will consider:

  • whether the Act is needed
  • the operation and effectiveness of the Act
  • whether changes to the Act are necessary or desirable.

More details are in the terms of reference.

Terms of reference [PDF, 336 KB]

An expert panel formed to help

MPI will work with a panel of 3 people, chaired by Dr Hugh Logan, to complete the review by September 2019. The panel has experience in public access to the outdoors, Māori access issues, and government.

About the Act

The purpose of the Act is to provide the New Zealand public with free, certain, enduring, and practical walking access to the outdoors.  It is also the piece of legislation that established the New Zealand Walking Access Commission.

The commission leads and supports the negotiation, establishment, maintenance, and improvement of walking access and other associated types of access, such as cycling, horse trekking, 4-wheel driving, hunting and fishing.  The commission works with private landowners, local government, the Department of Conservation and others to carry out this work.

Find out more

Our media release issued on 29 November 2018 has more information, including about the panel chair Dr Logan.

Who to contact

If you have any questions or comments about the review, email

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