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Cycleway and roundabout to be trialled in Waipawa

Author
CHB Mail,
Publish Date
Mon, 17 Jul 2023, 1:22pm
Students from Waipawa School check out a presentation of Waipawa’s proposed street changes.
Students from Waipawa School check out a presentation of Waipawa’s proposed street changes.

Cycleway and roundabout to be trialled in Waipawa

Author
CHB Mail,
Publish Date
Mon, 17 Jul 2023, 1:22pm

Projects to create a safer and more accessible main street in Waipawa as well as walking/cycling pathways for Otāne and Pōrangahau are on track to begin before the end of the year.

Town Activation portfolio lead for Central Hawke’s Bay District Council, Deputy Mayor Kelly Annand, says the project has been a long time coming after years of community calls to make the main street safer.

“Last year, we were lucky enough to be selected by Waka Kotahi [New Zealand Transport Agency] for funding to test much-needed improvements along the main street. Since September, we have been working with a co-design group, including community members, business owners and local police as well as technical designers and engineers, to develop detailed designs to be tested later this year. These changes are available to view on the council’s website,” says Annand.

While it’s a busy corridor for freight, plans also needed to cater for pedestrians, cyclists, school children and shoppers who use Waipawa’s main street. The Streets for People programme includes measures to reduce traffic speeds through town, give better access to both sides of the street and make it easier for people to cycle or walk.

By piloting and testing street changes, the council will be able to develop permanent changes for the future. Testing will begin in September and feedback from the community will be sought.

Proposed and temporary changes for Waipawa’s main street include additional temporary pedestrian crossings on the main street and the Ruataniwha Street intersection, a temporary roundabout at the Ruataniwha intersection, a temporary cycleway along the main street, extending from Waipawa River Bridge to Victoria Street/Waverley Street intersection and temporary traffic calming and road narrowing from Tamumu Road.

Otāne and Pōrangahau have active transport changes coming later this year thanks to funding from Waka Kotahi via the Transport Choices programme.

In Pōrangahau, this means a shared footpath for safer walking or cycling to the local school, while shared paths are planned to connect most of Otāne township. Work in Otāne and Pōrangahau is expected to start in the last quarter of 2023.

Central Hawke’s Bay District Council chief executive Doug Tate says while recovery from Cyclone Gabrielle remains a priority, the Streets for People and Transport Choices programmes can now slowly be reactivated.

 “We’re seeing first-hand the impact of our changing climate - Cyclone Gabrielle followed the wettest winter on record. Both the Streets for People and Transport Choices programmes encourage safer, healthier active ways to get around, helping to reduce emissions.

“We would never be able to afford these programmes on our own, especially not now, so we’re grateful to Waka Kotahi for funding and ongoing support.”

Central Hawke’s Bay District Council will receive 90 per cent of funding for the project from Waka Kotahi.

To read more about Streets for People in Waipawa, and see the drone footage of the safety and connectivity improvements to come, visit chbdc.govt.nz and search ‘#streetsforpeople’.

 

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