1. Now do High St!! Desperately needs to be pedestrianised. May as well do Queen too while we’re at it.

    1. High street has to be the number one ranking of disappointing streets in the Auckland. Incredible it still exists in its current form.

      1. I work around the corner, and I *never* spend a minute longer on High St than I need to in order to get to where I’m going. The fact that there’s nowhere to walk is an active disincentive to spending time on the street.

        1. Silly old men give old men a bad name, is all. These blokes are dinosaurs and need to be ignored because of that.

    1. They definitely look like the sort of delivery vans Murray Crane’s customers arrive in… I think he has a point.

  2. This area would be improved yet further if the council were brave enough to close Jean Batten Place at the Shortland Street end and Fort St at both the Beach Road and the Queen Street ends and on the eastern leg of the commerce Street intersection. Retain (and probably improve) vehicle access but stop all of the rat running and reduce speeds.

  3. Insane that High Street has been held hostage by some numbskull retailers who don’t understand what a people friendly street could do for their trade.

      1. Yes exactly, why do councillors think that retailers own this public space for their private car-parking?

    1. Maybe the real reason some high street retailers don’t want an upgtade is it might make their street too attractive… pushing up rents and squeezing out retailers with marginal business models. I wonder what side of the debate the landlords are on?

    2. With the Light Rail build in Sydney a large amount of George Street was closed mid last year, with the space turned over to pedestrians during the pre-christmas trade last year. The resulting higher foot traffic and lift in spend has got all of the retailers behind pedestrianisation of the space. I’m waiting to see how the upcoming christmas trading period goes.

    1. i dunno about that – to me poles and street signs are a form of visual pollution that we should aim to minimise where possible. But if we do get a sign I’d prefer it to say (at each end of Fort St) something like ‘walking speed only’ for cars and other wheeled vehicles.

  4. Was on queen street the other night and looked down fort street and thought how great it looked. Really has made a huge difference to the life of the city.

  5. I have noticed there are development happening on fort lane, it is called snackle lane. Soon will be a nice area.

    Also please have plan to upgrade and connect up the side streets on the western side of queen st please.

  6. Up until recently I walked along the Beach Road end of Fort St to get to Brito for my train and was always surprised at the speed vehicles were prepared to charge into that shared space. Rather than crude judder bars how about narrowing down that entrance way a lot more with planter boxes or solid sculpture so the traffic can’t see as far and has to slow for self preservation.

    1. One of the main contracted architects of shared spaces has an unfortunate preference for symmetry – quite the opposite of basic shared space principles. Bugger-all uncertainty in a dead straight route. Yet check out the existing projects. Where’s the tree or bench in the centre of the road like you’d see in the Netherlands, etc?

      1. You can still acheive massive calming with a symmetric layout, architect is just not competent.

  7. Swapping one bland grey for another bland grey. Where’s the coloured bricks? Where’s the lawn area? Colourful gardens? I guess they need to keep it clear for vehicles – A road in disguise.

    1. No lawn area but it did get trees and gardens. The colour comes from the greenery, the pohutukawas in bloom, the benches, the outdoor tables and chairs, the footpath lighting installation, and of course the people using it all! He tangata, He tangata, He tangata!

      1. And those are pretty impressive sized pohutukawa in the picture – not easy to get hold of. I wonder if AC have a supplier with a stash of fully grown trees, ready for transplanting into High St?

        1. Specimen Trees will have to relocate soon… it’s part of the Otahuhu Coast Strategic Special Housing Area, and their site is now being marketed for townhouses. Hopefully they keep growing in a new spot!

    1. Private sector is adding few more linkages such as Snickel lane and another one between Commerce St and Gore St, but the network is still far from completion.

  8. And when did you 1st write that post, Patrick? 18mths ago. Soooo slow when the benefits are so stellar.

  9. The shared spaces like these are a huge improvement on what existed before!

    I do wish though, if AT is so intent on not closing the rat-run that is is Jean Batten Place, it installs raised tables / judder bars on both ends of Jean Batten because at present far too many motorists turning into Jean Batten simply do not give way to pedestrians who are walking up/down Shortland Street. Many are indignant at pedestrians who assert their rights and refuse to yield.

    On this point, does anyone know what the deal is with the entrance to Fort Street from Customs Street? The controlled intersection and green light implies that motorists entering Fort St have the right of way but my understanding is that they should actually be giving way to people walking along the shared space to / from Emily Place. This conflict point needs to be addressed, perhaps by way of signage / pedestrian zebra crossing / raised table / judder bar, or combination thereof. Another design flaw that encourages motorists to enter Fort St here at high speeds is the very short light phasing for vehicles approaching from Britomart Place, the phase is so short that each weekday morning I see at least one motorist, and as many as two or three, enter the intersection on the red!

    Another improvement that wouldn’t go amiss would be to install sacrificial protective bollards by bike racks and benches. At last count there are three bike racks that have been mangled by motorists driving into them and two benches seriously damaged as well. I used to lock my bicycle to a bike rack on Fort but no longer do since someone drove into it and totalled my bike.

    1. Agree, I was thinking something like those fluro highway wobble posts with the rubber base mounts, but in a nice stainless steel finish.

      Just strong enough to give a hearty thwack if you drive into it, but flexible enough not to seriously damage the post or the vehicle.

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