Tēnā koutou katoa,
It’s all happening at LGWM, and we are excited about what comes next. We started the Aotea Quay roundabout works in April with a celebratory sod turning event with our Partners including Mana Whenua, the Minister of Transport, Mayor Whanau and Thomas Nash. Meanwhile, we are investigating what lies beneath the Golden Mile in preparation for a smoother construction period with fewer surprises, as well as scanning the mass rapid transit corridor to understand more about the land and utilities underground.
It has been great talking with our communities about the Golden Mile and City Streets projects. Thank you for engaging with us and helping us to understand your thoughts and ideas about the future of these important places. We know that some of you are concerned about what the changes on the Golden Mile will mean, and we are listening. Have a look at the response we have recently published to our last Golden Mile consultation where we made changes, based on your views, to improve our plans.
Keep an eye out for us as we start more work around the city over the next few months. Our road cones mean progress, and we are excited to deliver a future for a great harbour city that is accessible to all, with attractive places, shared streets, and efficient local and regional journeys.
Sarah Gardner - Programme Director
New offices for a new day
We were incredibly honoured to have our Mana Whenua partners on site to bless our new offices as we moved into the Majestic Centre back in late April. Everyone was up bright and early to greet the new day, and spirits were high as we were guided through the blessing.
These offices, sitting on the Golden Mile, will play a key role as Let’s Get Wellington Moving shifts from planning into action – ready for the busy year to come.
Engagement almost over – remember to have your say!
It’s been a busy month of engagement for the LGWM team, with engagement open on the Golden Mile traffic resolutions and some key routes under the People-Friendly City Streets programme. The teams have been out and about in the various communities, listening to what people like and would like to change, and we’re excited to dig into all the survey data.
We’ve seen an excellent number of responses so far, but we’re after as much feedback as we can get. Engagement closes at midnight tonight, Tuesday 23 May, so if you haven’t already, head on over and have your say.
Aotea Quay roundabout starts construction
Another exciting milestone to kick off 2023 was the sod-turning and start of construction of the Aotea Quay roundabout. Replacing the signalised intersection, the roundabout is a key first step in the transformation of Hutt Road. It will improve safety and traffic flow along Hutt Road by allowing freight and ferry traffic to remain on State Highway 1 and access the ferry terminal via Aotea Quay, instead of getting off at Ngā Ūranga and using Hutt Road.
By redirecting freight and ferry traffic, we will be able to transform the Thorndon Quay-Hutt Road corridor by providing part-time bus priority lanes, as well as a two-way cycle path and dedicated footpath.
Find out more about the Aotea Quay roundabout here.
Golden Mile early works to continue
Early works will continue on Courtenay Place and Lambton Quay from mid-June until mid-July. The works will then be paused for the FIFA Women’s World Cup before resuming in September.
This work will help us to understand the environment beneath the pavement, to confirm the precise location of utilities and the geo-technical aspects of the Golden Mile, and to complete pre-construction planning, including bus shelter foundations.
To further minimise hazards and disruption, work will be carried out at night, from 7:00pm to 5:00am Sunday to Thursday, with measures taken to reduce noise and inconvenience for residents and businesses.
The Golden Mile team will be going door to door along the Golden Mile and side streets to share information with businesses, building owners and residents, while information will be sent to affected businesses and residents prior to works starting.
Underground utilities surveying in final stages for MRT
In late May, the second phase in the final stage of underground utilities surveying will begin. As part of our investigations into a mass rapid transit (MRT) system, underground utilities will be scanned using 2D and 3D surveying equipment with ground-penetrating radar. The surveying will help us to understand the ground conditions beneath the road, including the location of utilities and other geo-technical aspects. When completed, this survey will produce the city's most accurate underground map of utilities.
Such preparatory works are a key part of planning such a transformative project and will help us minimise the risk of cost increases and delays.
The investigation team will be surveying the road along Rintoul Street in Newtown through to Luxford Street, along Adelaide Road and The Parade, to and including Reef Street in Island Bay. This next stage of this utilities scanning will last for about 3-4 weeks and is expected to finish in early June 2023.
The surveying will cause minimal traffic disruption as work will mostly be carried out at night from around 7:00pm to 5:00am. Initial stages of the scanning have covered 15km of city roads, with 46,000m of power utilities, 26,000m of water utilities, and 32,000m of communications utilities mapped to date.
Kidzone trial report to be released
In mid-2022, after endorsement by the LGWM board, trials were conducted along the Hutt Road section of our Thorndon Quay-Hutt Road project.
These trials, in front of Best Start and Active Explorers day-care facilities, consisted of temporary changes to the layout of the cycle path and surrounding pavement, using temporary materials to see what design interventions would be most effective in reducing potential conflicts between pedestrians and cyclists.
Once completed, the TQHR two-way cycle path will pass five facilities where a significant number of children are dropped off and picked up, requiring parents and children to cross a cycle path to access the facilities. As such, it is important that we listen to key stakeholders in the area.
You can read more on the trials here, with the report due to be on our website soon.
Vivian Street intersections finished, waterfront improvements continue
The last of the Vivian Street pedestrian improvements is likely to be completed by the end of May. This will bring the number of completed intersection improvements along Vivian Street to five (Vivian and Willis, Victoria, Cuba, Taranaki, and Tory Street intersections).
We are also currently working along the waterfront, with the intersection at Jervois Quay and Harris Street expected to be completed by the end of May, along with works on the Willeston Street intersection. From there, works will move on to Brandon Street before coming back to Hunter Street.
These improvements will help to create an accessible city for everyone, including people using wheelchairs, people with prams and small children, people with limited mobility, and people who have visual impairment.
Key connection from Hutt Valley to link into LGWM projects
Those who commute or travel into Wellington regularly from the Hutt Valley will have seen a barge platform parked in the harbour. The barge is awaiting rock to be used to build two offshore habitats for birds as part of the wildlife protection plan for Te Ara Tupua – the shared pathway for walking and cycling between Lower Hutt and Wellington.
While not an LGWM project, the Ngā Ūranga to Petone section of Te Ara Tupua will flow into the Jarden Mile intersection, meeting our cycleway under the Johnsonville to Ngā Ūranga project, and then continuing down our improved Hutt Road, which will see less heavy traffic thanks to the Aotea Quay roundabout project.
It is exactly this sort of infrastructure connectivity, between projects and partner organisations, that will see Wellington transformed into a city where people have more choice in how they get around.