Hutt at Heart

Funding sought to improve Lower Hutt streetscape for COVID-19 recovery

Hutt City Council is applying for a share of the Government’s recently announced funding to support temporary footpath expansions, which allow people to better maintain physical distancing.

Under the programme, the Government (through Waka Kotāhi) will fund 90 per cent of the cost of temporary changes to streetscapes.  Funding can be used to roll-out ‘tactical urbanism’ – which may include using planter boxes, paint, or other methods to extend space on streets for walking and cycling.

Council has identified a number of projects to put forward for funding.  These are part of existing strategies and plans, and include:

  • Trialling an on-street cycleway on Knights Road between Waterloo Station and the central city
  • Trialling a pedestrian-friendly place-making initiative on Jackson Street Petone
  • Piloting better connections for cyclists and pedestrians between Taita, Naenae and Pomare and the proposed Beltway shared path
  • An investigation and trial of an on-street cycleway on The Esplanade
  • Trialling changes to Bunny Street in the central city to make it a more pedestrian and cyclist-friendly area
  • Piloting cycle-friendly changes on Melling Road to connect the Rivertrail to High Street.

Reducing speed limits to 30 km/h is also expected to be trialled in Lower Hutt’s central city and Petone’s shopping precinct, at the same time as some of the above projects.

Local communities will have a significant role in co-design processes, ahead of any projects going ahead.  This will ensure the views of residents and businesses are at the forefront of the temporary changes.

Lower Hutt Deputy Mayor, Tui Lewis, says the funding of these projects offers Lower Hutt significant benefits.

“First and foremost, temporary changes will support people to maintain physical distancing, which is critical to our ongoing and successful response to Covid-19.

“As well as this, it gives our city an opportunity to trial new approaches to city design and supporting active transport options in busy areas of the city.

“If our funding applications are successful, I’m looking forward to us working with local communities in the co-design of these projects, to make sure they’re as successful as possible,” says Tui Lewis.

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