Wellington Weather Radar Upgrade

Wellington Weather Radar prior to 2023 upgrade


From Tuesday, 14 March the MetService Wellington Weather Radar will be undergoing a major upgrade. To allow for this work the radar is scheduled to be offline for two months. This is part of our ongoing investment in the New Zealand weather radar network, funded through the contract with the Ministry of Transport.

The project involves strengthening the tower structure and replacing the 30-year-old radar hardware with new technology. The new radar will provide improved services to the lower North Island and upper South Island communities, aviation, defence, emergency services and maritime safety.

The Wellington radar sits high on Outlook Hill in a very exposed location which means that it has unimpeded radar coverage but also that any upgrade work will be dependent on the weather conditions. We have chosen this time of year for the more likely extended periods of settled weather/lighter winds which are typical of autumn.

There will be no impact to the production of MetService forecasts and warnings, which are informed by a broad range of data from weather models, satellites, weather balloons, and automatic weather stations.

While the radar undergoes its upgrade, composites of radar coverage from the Taranaki, Hawkes Bay, Westland and Canterbury radars provide partial coverage of the area covered by the Wellington Radar.

The new Wellington radar is schedule to return to service at the end of April.

Updated on 13 March 2023