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Flyover will “cut the city like a knife,” say architects; new thinking needed

News release from Architectural Centre
The news today that NZTA is proposing Option A is no surprise, but equally demonstrates that the Transport Agency has failed to shift its thinking following the government’s announcement that it is committed to creating a National Memorial Park worthy of the name.

“The flyover is a sticking plaster solution which fails to understand the Basin Reserve as an internationally significant site which connects Memorial Park and Government House – two places of national importance,” Architectural Centre President, Christine McCarthy said.

“The news that the government is funding a tunnel under Memorial Park will greatly alter the traffic situation that NZTA is aiming to address,” she continued.

The Architectural Centre believes that new thinking is needed to get the best solution for the urban design and traffic issues which currently plague the Basin. This is a key location in the future development of the city which needs to bring Adelaide Road and Newtown into the inner city. The NZTA proposal for an overpass will severe the city like a knife, and is counter to the principles of the Urban Design Protocol, which NZTA has signed up to.

The Architectural Centre has more than 65 years experience of providing forums to debate architecture and design and of advocating for good design in Wellington through public exhibition, publication, and submissions to local and central government. Its members comprise architectural and design professionals as well as those supportive of good design. Last year, the Centre proposed Option X as an alternative which it believes will give a better result for Wellington. Option X has no flyover, provides increased public parks and is designed to strengthen the connections between nationally significant places, and also separates SH1 traffic from local traffic, which is one of NZTA’s key objectives in this work.

“This shouldn’t be just about transport,” stated McCarthy “This should also be about the quality of the environment we live in.”