Established in 2011, UNISA responds to and manages a range of inter-regional and inter-metropolitan issues.
Members consists of Northland, Waikato and Bay of Plenty Regional Councils, Auckland Council, Whangarei District Council and Hamilton and Tauranga City Councils. Mayors and Chairs from the respective regions make up the alliance.
The Upper North Island is critical to the success of New Zealand. It supports 53 per cent of the national population and generates 52 per cent of the country’s GDP. Growth is increasing rapidly which has many benefits for the country, but brings with it a range of challenges that councils need to work together to solve.
The seven councils have an agreement in place which confirms their commitment to understanding and tackling these inter-regional challenges. The agreement was re-signed in March 2017.
In March 2017, UNISA released The Upper North Island Story [PDF, 1.5 MB] which is about growth and change and how important the connections between the regions and cities of the Upper North Island are to the ongoing success of New Zealand.
It identifies the need for collaborative investment and planning to tackle increasing pressure on housing, infrastructure, natural resources, skilled labour and transport system.
It also outlines population and economic growth projections to 2033 and identifies key challenges and opportunities that Upper North Island communities will face as a result of projected changes. UNISA partners will is now working together to tackle shared challenges and maximise opportunities through collaborative investment, planning and advocacy work.
The UNISA partners have worked on a range of other projects since forming in 2011.