Image: Gateways promote road safety
2 September 2003
Eye-catching road safety signs created by artist Toby Twiss will be blessed in a special ceremony in Titirangi on September 15.
Based on designs by school children in the Glen Eden and Titirangi area, the ‘gateway’ signage aims to improve road safety and raise traffic and pedestrian awareness around schools. It will benefit Titirangi Primary, Kaurilands Primary and Glen Eden Intermediate, all of which are located on busy traffic routes. The three schools have been key to the development of the project, actively supporting the need for safety signs and involving their students in the process.
Mr Twiss ran workshops with the children, creating six road safety signs incorporating their artwork. The signs sit in pairs, creating a gateway appearance along Atkinson Road and Kaurilands Road.
The colourful metal signs are based on conventional road signs, but incorporate cut-out images rather than words. Children were asked to think about speed, how they get to school and how they would encourage drivers to slow down.
An Elam Schools of Arts graduate, Mr Twiss is a professional sculptor with a diploma in teaching. One of his latest works includes “the Robbie Statue” (of Sir Dove-Myer Robinson) in Aotea Square.
“I believe that children should have a feeling of ownership within their community,” he says. “By contributing to the making of these signs, they have been able to express their concerns and attitudes about road safety using an authoritative language in the form of road signage.”
The Glen Eden/Titirangi Gateways art project follows the successful 2001 project in Kelston, where four schools worked with Mr Twiss to create three gateways for their area.
New Lynn Ward Councillor, Greg Presland, says the gateways project has a number of aims.
“Primarily, it is to help make the area a safer place for children getting to and from school. But bringing the children from the local schools together also fosters a strong sense of ownership and pride in the project and the messages the gateways give out are evident,” he says.
The blessing and ribbon-cutting ceremony will take place at 11am on September 15 at the Titirangi Roundabout, outside Titirangi Primary.