30/05/2019 12:00:00 p.m.
30 May 2019
A section of Whanganui’s Maria Place will be closed from Tuesday, 4 June 2019 until Friday, 28 June 2019 while a raised platform is built in St Hill Street.
The closure affects the part of Maria Place from St Hill Street to just before the Farmers’ carpark, which will remain open. Vehicles will be unable to enter or exit the closed part of Maria Place during the work. Signs will be in place.
The raised platform is being installed across St Hill Street at the intersection with Maria Place. This part of St Hill Street will be reduced to one lane during the work and controlled by either temporary traffic signals or traffic controllers during phases of work. Delays are likely and motorists are advised to use Wilson Street, Wicksteed Street or Watt Street as alternative routes.
Whanganui District Council’s Senior Roading Engineer, Brent Holmes, says the raised platform is part of the Te Tuaiwi Shared Pathway project that includes St Hill Street. “It’s been designed to better link pedestrians, mobility users and cyclists – by way of traffic calming – from the CBD to the shared pathway and vice versa,” he says.
“It is not an official zebra crossing, and vehicles will still have the right of way.”
Proponents of a better crossing facility include Pedestrians on Wheels, a collection of mobility scooter users who advocate for better-quality access around the city for people with mobility issues, and the Women’s Network, who approached the Council in 2017 for a kerbside off-ramp in front of their St Hill Street premises.
Mr Holmes says, “The platform is intended to alleviate safety concerns for these groups as well as other users of this area of the city.”
The majority of funding for the St Hill Street raised platform has been provided by the New Zealand Transport Agency.