Ngaio: A brief look back

Ngaio: A brief look back

Before 1840: Ngaio was covered with heavy bush with a few clearings for Maori gardens.  The nearest Maori settlement was the pa at Kaiwharawhara.  A well-used Maori track ran over the hills to the pa at Ohariu.  The Bridle Track from Kaiwharawhara to Khandallah, which formed part of this, was the first route north from Wellington.

1840: Tree felling was underway in central Ngaio.  Crofton Road, Ottawa Road and Awarua Street were early logging tracks.

1843: Captain Daniell, one of the first settlers, built Ngaio’s first house.  Old Porirua Road was formed for access to Wellington and as part of the new route north.

1846: A flour mill, owned by Charles Schultze and powered by a waterwheel was built on the site of the Mobil oil tank in the lower Ngaio Gorge.

1840s and 50s: The area was known variously as the Old Porirua Road District, Upper Kaiwharra, Trelissic, and then Crofton.  Saw milling got underway and farming developed as land was cleared.  Sir William Fox, later a premier of New Zealand moved into his new house “Crofton” (now 21 Kenya Street) in 1857.  In 1962 it became a private boy’s college until 1875.

1845:  Construction of Ngaio Gorge Road commenced.

1865: “Chew Cottage” built at what is now 19 Ottawa Road.

1879: Construction began on the railway line from Wellington to Manawatu through Ngaio and Johnsonville.  It was opened as far as Paramata in 1885.

1904: Methodist church built at corner of Kenya Street and Crofton Road.

1906: The first shop in the area, Crofton Supply Store, opened opposite the church.

1908: Ngaio was given its present name.  Ngaio School opened.

1916: Ngaio’s population reached 1906.

1924: Town Hall and Library Room opened.

1920s: There were still extensive areas of open land around the suburb.  The Progressive Association ran silent movies in the Town Hall.

1925: The Bell Bus Company began to operate a service from Ngaio and Khandallah to the city.

1928: The building of the railway settlement in Tarikaka Street began.

1930: Onslow Cricket Club established.

1938: Main trunk railway stopped running through the district and the Johnsonville line was electrified. Read More

1940: State houses built on Cockayne Road.

1940s, 50s, 60s, and 70s: A gradual intensification of housing in the central area of Ngaio and extension, first into the west of the suburb and later into Crofton Downs,  Chartwell and the Fox Street area.  In the 1970s the proposed development of housing into upper Crofton Downs and hillside above Patna Street was too controversial and did not proceed.

1949: The Kindergarten and Plunket Rooms were built by the community.

1955: Churchill Drive, previously a dirt track, was opened.

1970: Chartwell School opened.

1975: Crofton Downs Mall opened.

1981: Ngaio School remodelled.

1988-89: Ngaio Town Hall renovated

1989: Cummings Park Library opened.

19??:  Closure of Ngaio Post office.

1989: Roundabout installed at intersection of Crofton Road and Ottawa Road.

2004-: Ngaio Village upgraded.

2010: Railway stations upgraded.

2010: BP petrol station closed.

2012: Mairangi trains run on the Johnsonville line.