Trialling people-friendly spaces in West Papatoetoe to improve safety

A new trial of road layouts to help reduce vehicle speeds, provide safer crossings and prevent traffic from using residential streets as short cuts is kicking off in West Papatoetoe.

The trial involves using temporary devices such as rubber speed cushions, concrete blocks, pavement art and turning neighbourhood intersections into a temporary cul-de-sac.

As part of the trial - access will be restricted to Claude Ave, Hillside Road, Park Ave and Sumner Street.

Since January, Auckland Transport (AT) and the Ōtara-Papatoetoe Local Board has been asking the community for feedback on how to create people-friendly spaces and safer ways to travel in West Papatoetoe.

Ōtara-Papatoetoe Local Board chair Apulu Reece Autagavaia says the trial will test what works for residents, businesses and schools and what does not.

“The community has told us about numerous issues with speeding vehicles making them feel unsafe, causing damage to property and near misses. AT has also gathered feedback from its first round of consultation and the community is in support of measures to slow down traffic and improve safety. They want the trial to go ahead.

“By testing these different road layouts, and some of these are outside Aorere College and West Papatoetoe School, residents and the school community can experience the changes in real time and get a better understanding of it rather than reading the plans on paper.

“We support AT carrying out the trial and listening to community feedback before making any permanent changes.

“The trial and temporary devices will be in play for a few weeks and during this time we ask people to be patient and allow these changes. We’re hoping to gather richer feedback from people of their experiences, observations, any benefits from the trial, or impacts. We want to hear the perspectives of drivers, parents who want to encourage their children to walk or ride their bike to school and from people who regularly travel through the area,” says Mr Autagavaia.

The trial is part of a programme called Innovating Streets for People.

Auckland Transport’s Group Manager of Network Management, Randhir Karma, says AT is embracing a ‘consultation by trial’ approach for the Auckland Innovating Streets Programme.

“We are consulting with the community via these trials - which are adaptable and encourage community engagement. The installations encourage people to walk and cycle more – as they make our streets safer.”

“Through this programme, AT is trialling new ways of working with our communities. Fast changes in our streets have the potential to deliver significant safety and liveability benefits in a short timeframe.

“We’ll listen to the community, take their feedback on board and can make fast changes where required.”

During the trial, public feedback can be given online or at one of our drop-in sessions at Papatoetoe Library every Wednesday from the 12th of May, between 3pm and 6pm.

Find out more about this project and have your say. 

Aorere College school crossing before trial of raised speed table.