What Were the Changes? » Walking

Walking

An important aim of Te Ara Mua – Future Streets was to encourage people to walk more, particularly for local trips like going to the shops, to school, to the doctor, or to the bus stop. But walking wasn’t always the easiest or safest option. The footpaths were really narrow, it could take ages to cross the road, and cars went really fast.

Because of this, many of the changes that were made to the streets were designed to make walking more comfortable, easier, and less annoying. In this section we describe what some of the changes were and why they were made.

Community Trail

The Community Trail was built as part of  Te Ara Mua – Future Streets. It is a 2km loop that goes along Mascot Avenue, Pershore Place, Windrush Reserve, Windrush Close, through the Waddon Walkway, and along the edge of the Town Centre car park. To see a map of where it goes, click here.

The path is 3m wide, meaning that people can easily and comfortably walk along it as a group, rather than in single file. It also features dots so you can find your way around it, and bands placed every 100m so you know how far you have gone. It is used by many people for exercise, recreation, or access to schools, shops, and services.

If you would like to know more about groups who use the trail for exercise, click here.

Zebra Crossings

Before the changes we noticed that people had to wait ages to cross – often taking risks like running in front of cars, or standing in the middle of the road – because there was no other option to get across. In locations near the Town Centre, and near schools, this was really worrying because there were a lot of people walking around, but not many safe options for them to cross the road.

To help fix this, several zebra crossings and raised zebra crossings were installed in Māngere Central. A zebra crossing is a type of pedestrian crossing painted onto the road’s surface which gives priority to pedestrians over cars. An even safer version is called a ‘raised zebra crossing’. Here, the zebra stripes are painted onto the top of a ramp which forces drivers to slow down, making them more likely to give way.

Pedestrian priority changes on Mascot Avenue – click to enlarge

To see how a raised zebra crossing on Mascot Avenue changed the location that pedestrians cross the road, click here.

For a great example of how a raised zebra crossing makes pedestrians safer, check out the animation below.

© Elizabeth Press – StreetFilms.org – Creative Commons

Pedestrian access through the Town Centre car park

The Town Centre in Māngere Central is a vibrant place to visit. It has a variety of shops, services, and places to hang out. Getting to the Town Centre by car has always been easy. It is surrounded by a huge car park. But walking there, even from your car used to be really difficult.

We wanted to improve pedestrian access through the Town Centre car park, thereby improving connections to key destinations. To do this, a couple of rows of parking spaces were removed and were replaced with painted yellow walkways and a series of zebra crossings.

This is not always well enforced, and people still park on the walkway, blocking pedestrian access. More needs to be done to control this. However, in general, it is now a lot easier to walk through the Town Centre car park.

INVITATION: WALKING & BIKING IN MĀNGERE COMMUNITY HUI