In a citizens-initiated referendum on the issue, 83 percent of those who voted were against the proposal.
A total of 56,250 people were eligible to vote with 45 percent doing so.
Mayor Andrew Judd, who championed a Maori Ward, said he was personally disappointed with the result and the poor turnout.
He said the council must now reconsider how to engage with Maori and enable their participation in decision-making, as it was required to do by law.
Hugh Johnson, who sponsored the petition forcing a referendum, said he was satisfied with the result which was more clear-cut than he expected.
“I think it’s very good, we beat Northland, Northland was only 66 percent.
“So the voters are feeling like I do [in thinking] that people should only be elected to council on their own merit.”