Councils collaborate on Naenae subway's safety
30 May 2008
Councils collaborate to improve Naenae subway's safety
Greater Wellington, the Hutt City Council and transport agencies are taking action to improve the safety of Naenae's subway, following complaints from local retailers and an increase in crime.
Greater Wellington Chair Fran Wilde says the subway, which runs between Oxford Terrace and Cambridge Terrace and provides access to Naenae Railway Station, has been plagued with safety problems since it was built in the 1950s. "However, recent serious assaults and ongoing problems with vandalism means we need to take action now to help protect the safety of subway users."
Greater Wellington officers met with their counterparts from the Hutt City Council, Toll Holdings, Ontrack and Tranzmetro yesterday to discuss ways to improve the safety of the subway. The subway has many entries and exits and is very long - about 50 metres. The configuration of the subway encourages crime and makes it difficult to install and maintain safety features.
Hutt City Mayor David Ogden says the subway is an important access way, not only to the railway station but also for foot traffic between Cambridge and Oxford Terrace â€" particularly children walking to school and shoppers. "We want these people to feel safer when they use the subway, so we'll introduce some fairly simple measures to start with, and see if they work. The Hutt City Council will also work with Greater Wellington and other agencies to investigate longer-term options."
Mayor Ogden says that though several different agencies have responsibility for different parts of the subway and the land that it is on, at the end of the day the safety of Naenae's residents is paramount. "All the key players have decided that the way forward is to work together and find the best way to improve the subway - and we've made a good start."
Yesterday's meeting was convened at the instigation of Greater Wellington, following a submission by the retailers and school community of Naenae, which Mayor Ogden spoke in favour of at a Greater Wellington annual plan hearing committee last Wednesday.