Nelson City Council’s City Centre Streets for People project has received a funding opportunity from Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency.

Council’s City Centre Streets for People project is part of an investigation into how to improve pedestrian safety, visitor experience, consumer spending and activity in Nelson’s city centre.

As part of the project, the public were recently asked for their feedback on potential options to widen Trafalgar, Hardy and Bridge Streets in the central city using semi-permanent, removable and adaptable measures, and a fourth option to make no change.

The feedback survey, which closed on Friday, 26 June, received more than 600 submissions, which will now be collated and reviewed before going to a full Council meeting on 12 August 2020 for consideration.

Innovating Streets provides 90% funding assistance up to $1 million in support of projects designed in partnership with local communities to make streets safer, with more space for people, and which test temporary or semi-permanent layouts, materials and designs to inform permanent upgrades.

The offered funding for the project will be considered along with the responses to the survey.
Nelson Mayor Rachel Reese said the investment from Central Government was a welcome step forward in Nelson’s post-COVID-19 recovery.

“Waka Kotahi has recognised the value of the city centre project and gives us the potential to turn it into something that could benefit our community now, and in years to come, but any final decision has to be what’s right for our people and our city.

“Projects that receive funding must be planned, designed and delivered by the end of June 2021 so we have some time to put real thought into this.”

Councillor Pete Rainey, Chair of the City Centre Working Group said: “We have been gifted this resource, but how, or if, we use it is up to our community. We have yet to find out which of the four options are most preferred, but this money could go toward any of the three options for change included in the survey.”

Kathryn King, Waka Kotahi’s Portfolio Manager Developing Regions said: “The programme aims to use the pilot fund to grow our national capability in the ‘tactical urbanism’ approach so we can scale up the pace of change as we transition to safer, cleaner, healthier and more equitable towns and cities. Pilots, pop-ups and interim treatments help us try out street changes and gain valuable on-the-ground feedback from communities."