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Dunedin City Council – Kaunihera-a-rohe o Otepoti
Traffic lights.

Maintaining our roads

This page details road maintenance information about potholes, cracked footpaths, broken handrails, dusty roads, grass mowing and vegetation control.

Dust suppression on Dunedin roads

We do not usually apply dust suppressant on unsealed roads. However, if you think there is a need for it, contact us or submit a Fix It report (from the related information area below) and we will assess the situation. Applications of dust suppressant in these cases will consist of a 100-metre application on the road or roads adjacent to the property that requested it.

Dust suppression is typically undertaken in late November/early December on a list of roads approved by Council. If you do not wish to have the dust suppressant applied outside your property, let us know and we will discuss your concerns.

Applying for dust suppression

You need to get your request for dust suppression in no later than 30 September of each year, so we can schedule the application of suppressant for the following summer period. You can check with us to see if your road is scheduled to be oiled. For more information, or to discuss your concerns, contact us.

Footpath and road repairs

We maintain all public roads and footpaths, including minor structures, such as handrails. New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) maintains roads only, that are part of the state highway network.

Each year in the Annual Plan, we set a schedule for repairs to be carried out on Dunedin streets as part of our three-year capital programme. We have a list of proposed repairs for this financial year if you would like more information.

Does a footpath need attention?

If some part of your footpath or street is in need of repairs or is hazardous, contact us or submit a Fix It report. We will investigate the problem and take the necessary remedial action. We will also be able to let you know if your area is scheduled for maintenance work.

Cutback Vegetation

A vegetation free envelope is maintained on all roads within the Dunedin network for the benefit of road users. The diagram below (also linked to on this page) shows the different envelopes for different types of roads. These envelopes are maintained to improve motorists’ sight distance, reduce hazards and provide the safest environment possible for motorists and pedestrians.

Private Vegetation

Vegetation that encroaches the road boundary which is growing from a private property will not be maintained by us. This is the responsibility of the property owner.

Vegetation on the Road

The DCC only maintains DCC planted street trees and sprays or removes vegetation on the road which causes a safety issue or is a noxious weed.  All other vegetation is the responsibility of the adjacent property owner to manage.  Where vegetation which is not maintained by the DCC is causing a problem, the property owner will be contacted and asked to trim or remove it.  If it becomes a safety concern to road users then the DCC may remove it and the cost of this may be charged back to the property owner.

Vegetation envelope diagram


We undertake spraying to control noxious weeds on the road and footpaths. Footpaths, kerb and channels are treated with glyphosate, while noxious weeds on the road reserve are treated with Tordon Brushkiller.

No Spray List

We currently have a list of properties where our contractors do not spray due to the property owner's request; in this case, the property owner will take over the full responsibility of weed control in this area. If you want to join this list or if you want to be removed from the list please contact us.

Alternatively, download and complete the No Spray List Application from the related information area below.

Grass Mowing

It is our policy that the grass verges will be the responsibility of the adjacent land owner. It is only in special circumstances that we will consider maintaining the verge for the property owner.

Grass Cutting Types

We maintain different grass areas to different standards. There are three different types of cuts we carry out:

  • Type 1: Grass length 30-100mm. These areas are usually grass verges, traffic island areas or other high profile sites. All cuttings must be picked up and disposed of off-site by the contractor.
  • Type 2: Grass length 50-200mm. Usually the land shape does not allow a mower on it e.g. steep slopes. Hence a lot of these are cut using weed eaters.
  • Type 3: Grass length 50-300mm. These are low profile areas which are only maintained to reduce hazards such as possible visibility impairments and fire risks etc.

Our policy relating to the cutting of grass verges in urban areas is:

  • The maintenance of all grass verges is the responsibility of the adjacent property owner.
  • Where the adjacent property owner is, by way of illness, age or similar restrictions, unable to do the work and is unable to make alternative arrangements, we will undertake verge cutting to a minimum standard. We may require a medical certificate in such cases.
  • We undertake an annual review of exceptions for those whose grass verge is being maintained.
  • Otherwise our maintenance of verges will be limited to grass cutting to reduce hazards.

If you believe that these conditions apply to you, contact us to discuss having your grass verge mown or download and complete the Grass Verge Cut Application from the related information.

State Highways

If you are concerned about the length of the grass alongside a state highway and the area concerned is past the 50km zone you will need to contact New Zealand Transport Agency as they are responsible for maintenance of state highways, and the land alongside them. View the NZ Transport Agency website. (link to external website, new window)

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