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Pedestrianisation of Auckland street the “right way to go.”

Chief Executive of the Association of Consulting Engineers New Zealand (ACENZ) Paul Evans has come out in support of the pedestrianisation of High St in Auckland.

Auckland Mayor Phil Goff and Council planning committee chair Councillor Chris Darby have revealed that a trial of the new pedestrian concept will begin in October 2019.

Paul Evans says “I commend Mayor Goff and council on this announcement. It’s a key step in putting people back at the heart of the way we design our cities. This will ensure that we have a city which is safe, inclusive, accessible and thriving”.

Figures show that for every car on High Street, there are 14 pedestrians, and with the reallocation of space, the pedestrian figure is likely to grow. “We need to recognise that business success doesn’t come from cars or parking spaces, it’s people,” Paul Evans says.

“By prioritising people, our local businesses thrive. Research shows that as pedestrians increase across the city, we see a rise in retail spending along with the growth of amenities, such as the number of café seats. Pedestrians are the economic engine room of the city’s retail sector. This move is excellent for people and business.

“The High Street project will also bring positive social outcomes, as areas with more pedestrians are generally safer and more vibrant.”

The Mayor announced the trial would be a co-design process, in partnership with retailers and users.

“This type of tactical approach allows the council to try a range of ideas swiftly and nimbly to find what works best for people. I believe this move will allow the city to identify the perfect combination of social and economic outcomes.”

Paul Evans says “I look forward to seeing further trials of this type across Auckland, as we move towards building strong and flourishing communities.”

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