A missive has arrived from Wellington City Council, outlining that they have a plan for some changes around Garrett St (just off Cuba St) and Swan Lane (opposite Garrett St). In the interests of speediness, as they have a very short period of consultation, I’m going to post it here. There is actually screeds of paperwork, with parking places spelt out in GPS coordinates (Ha! try to prove that wrong – or right!). There is only one drawing however: this one right here. I’ve rotated it for you so that it makes more sense: north, as always, is up the page…

It seems that this people and places exercise has started with some mighty aims but has ended up with lesser ideals. It is now a traffic exercise, curiously muted of any great amount of useful pedestrian quality. The Council claim that: “The proposed changes will improve pedestrian visibility and safety, increase pedestrian accessibility and provide additional public amenity space and will not impact the primary functioning of the streets and Swan Lane with access to buildings, businesses and servicing requirements.”

I certainly have some issues with this proposal – but will keep them to myself at present. What do you think? Care to share your thoughts here? Is this an improvement? Or a step backwards? Or just a waste of time achieving nothing much?

Submissions on this plan are due with the WCC by 22nd December – you’re not busy doing anything else round then, are you? Christmas shopping perhaps? Relaxing on holiday at the beach already? Make a quick submission before you leave town – cos heaven only knows this will get lost after Christmas. Please provide feedback on the proposed changes online, by email to trfeedback@wcc.govt.nz , or in writing and send to Transport and Infrastructure, PO Box 2199 Wellington.


View along Garrett St towards the Swan Lane

Above is an image from the Council document many months ago, which I think is taken from Garrett St, near the Green Party headquarters (OK – the Rogue and Vagabond – know it now?). The image below is also from Garrett St, looking across Cuba St at the entry to Swan Lane, which is closed off in the pic by some vigorous gardening. That’s all well and good – but it is not quite what is shown on the latest Traffic Plan above – where cars are clearly still allowed to drive down Swan Lane. No, No, No, and also No. That is not what we (the people) wanted. Cars driving down Swan Lane means that it continues as it already is: an area for vehicles, not an area for people.

From Garrett St, across to Swan Lane, with planting to stop cars.
View from outside Noble Rot – area nicely paved and clearly pedestrianised. Why are we not getting this?