Buildings or objects sometimes encroach on the legal road corridor, the ground beneath it or the airspace above it. Auckland Transport (AT) does not encourage road encroachments, but we may consider granting a temporary licence or lease if an encroachment is needed.
Common examples of road encroachments are:
- decks and verandas.
- garages and carports.
- retaining walls.
- ground anchors.
- pedestrian air bridges.
AT will generally not consider road encroachments that involve:
- planting trees on the berm (due to the requirements for traffic and pedestrian safety, and interference with utility services above and below ground).
- locating structures at ground level for any purpose that involves the commercial use of public land.
Encroachment licences and leases
A road encroachment licence authorises a right to occupy an area of legal road, but does not give the licence-holder exclusive possession in the way a lease does.
An encroachment on the road surface can only be licensed (not leased). as the public’s legal right of unblocked access cannot be compromised.
AT can grant a lease for encroachments above the road (airspace) and below the road (subsoil). A subsoil or airspace lease is a property right to exclusively occupy the area.
Property owners or developers must submit an application to AT and receive approval before placing any encroaching object on, under or above a legal road.
AT reserves the right to exercise its discretion not to proceed with the lease or licence at any point during the application process.
Who can apply
Usually only the owners of land immediately adjoining the legal road can apply for a licence, lease or encumbrance. Any other applicant is likely to have their application declined unless they get prior written consent from all other adjoining landowners (and service/utility authorities if any of their utilities are affected).
Only those properties immediately next to the land in question are adjoining owners. This doesn't include neighbours who are one or more properties removed.
Step 1. Initial enquiry
Make an initial enquiry to AT to see if we will consider the encroachment licence or lease.
Step 2. Formal application
If the initial enquiry is confirmed by AT, then you can submit a formal application:
Also required with your application
- Signed consents from service authorities (if any of their utilities are affected), copies of plans, aerials (if applicable), cross sections etc.
- Non-refundable deposit of $1,000 (incl. GST) - contact us to discuss payment options.
Send your completed application to:
Auckland Transport (Attn: Property Department),
Private Bag 92250,
Note: Submitted applications cannot be guaranteed until they have been approved through all steps of the process.
Consent to a lease or licence by AT does not constitute regulatory approval to placement of encroachments within the road corridor. In cases where the encroachment may be permanent, a memorandum of encumbrance will be required to be entered into and registered against the adjoining properties' land title at no cost to AT.
- You may need to get building and/or resource consent from Auckland Council, who are the regulatory authority.
- If you are digging within the road corridor, you need to lodge a Corridor Access Request (CAR) separate from any lease or licence. Find out more about CARs.
Encroachment policy and guidelines
- Download the road surface, airspace and subsoil encroachment guidelines (PDF 1.3MB)
- Download the road surface, airspace and subsoil encroachment policy (PDF 257KB)