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Pedestrians get priority on new look Queen Street

Pedestrians get priority on new look Queen Street

Aucklanders are invited to have their say on draft plans to transform Queen Street into a main street we can all be proud of.

Chairperson of Auckland City’s Strategy and Governance Committee, Councillor Mark Donnelly, says the $23.4 million street upgrade will convert Queen Street into a safe, accessible street that reflects Auckland’s cultural heritage, business interests, pacific location and coastal nature.

The main features of the concept plan are: an enlarged Aotea Square spreading out across Queen Street to Rutland Street. a plaza area, 17 metres wide, outside the Civic Theatre and Force Entertainment Complex a new square opening out on to Myers Park where people can enjoy the afternoon sun and views of the park. The new square will help highlight the park’s presence, make it more accessible and park use wider footpaths made of bluestone paving with a contrasting pattern that reflects Auckland’s Pacific location, maritime nature and Maori heritage a variety of artworks, including water features bright, white lights to improve safety as well as feature lighting more trees and landscaping better pedestrian crossing opportunities

Mr Donnelly says the draft plans are in line with the council’s draft Central Area Access Strategy that designates Queen Street from Mayoral Drive to Customs Street as a street where pedestrians, public transport and cyclists have priority over cars.

Between Karangahape Road and Mayoral Drive the proposed traffic lane arrangement is generally unchanged except for a new double left turn into Mayoral Drive to reduce through traffic on Queen Street.

From Mayoral Drive to Customs Street, the draft plans propose narrowing the existing road to 12.4 metres, removing the indented bays to create parallel kerb lines and prohibiting all private car parking. The four lanes will allow for kerb side parking for buses and loading vehicles as well as one traffic lane in each direction.

Right hand turns at all intersections except Victoria Street and Customs Street will be forbidden.

Mr Donnelly says it is crucial for the success of the project that people take a look at the plans and tell the council what they think.

“The Queen Street upgrade supports Auckland City’s strategy to revitalise Auckland’s central business district (CBD) into one of the world’s most vibrant and dynamic business and cultural centres. Auckland’s CBD not only supports Auckland City and the regional economy, it also plays a key role in the wider New Zealand economy. We need to ensure it meets the needs of all its users,” he says.

Public consultation runs from 19 April to 14 May 2004. The public will be able to have their say after the 19 April by filling in the feedback form on www.aucklandcity.govt.nz/cbd or emailing their ideas to queen@aucklandcity.govt.nz.

Copies of the plans, feedback forms and free post envelopes will also available from the displays at the: Britomart Display Centre, Northern Steamship Building, 122 Quay Street Central City Library, 44 - 46 Lorne Street, Auckland central Ground floor of the former Chief Post Office

All ideas will be considered for inclusion in the final plans. Physical work is expected to begin early next year.

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