What is a pedestrian mall
A pedestrian mall is an area of the legal road corridor where the right to use vehicles is prohibited or restricted. Our roading network is designed to help people and vehicles move around the town, however there are some places where we want to avoid conflict between pedestrians and vehicles.
This is a legal mechanism that enables Council to create those safe areas for pedestrians. At the same time, it enables us to retain the land as legal road so we can continue to maintain the public and private infrastructure that is already in place.
Taupō District Council proposes to create two pedestrian malls, one on the eastern leg of Horomatangi Street intersection with Titiraupenga Street, and the second on an area of Lake Terrace located between Tongariro Street and Ruapehu Street. The areas proposed to be subject to pedestrian malls are identified in the images provided in the options below.
The proposed prohibition wording outlined below relates to both proposed pedestrian malls.
Pursuant to section 336(1) of the Local Government Act 1974, the Council; Prohibits at all times the driving, riding, or parking of any vehicle, or the riding of any animal on the pedestrian mall.
It is proposed that the following exemptions will apply to the pedestrian mall:
- Cyclists (and riders of wheeled recreational devices, including motorised and e-scooters) will be exempt from the prohibition and may access any part of the pedestrian mall at all times but must give priority to pedestrians.
- Emergency service vehicles will be exempt from the prohibition and may access the pedestrian mall at any time that is necessary.
- Authorised vehicles (with prior permission from Taupō District Council) will be exempt from the prohibition and may access the pedestrian mall when necessary to undertake maintenance, make essential deliveries or collections or assist in activities occurring within the pedestrian mall.
Lake Terrace pedestrian mall
In 2011, we signaled through our Taupō Urban Commercial and Industrial Structure Plan a desire to create better connections between our district’s biggest asset, Lake Taupō, and the Taupō town centre. The Taupō Town Centre Transformation Project has presented an opportunity for us to create a world class lakefront that seamlessly connects to the commercial area and has the flexibility and functionality to be used in a number of different ways.
To allow us to achieve this, we will be moving the main traffic flow from Tongariro Street and Lake Terrace across to Spa Road and then down Titiraupenga Street. This will markedly decrease traffic volumes through the central business district and reduce the speeds those accessing the town centre will be travelling at.
We also intend shifting traffic off the existing Lake Terrace between Ruapehu Street and Tongariro Street, and onto a reconfigured one-way Roberts Street which will flow north to south. The traffic flow from the south will come along Lake Terrace and then be directed into Ruapehu Street and through the town centre. This will move cars away from the lakefront, while still retaining vehicle access to businesses. These changes mean that vehicles won’t need to drive along the existing Lake Terrace road alignment between Ruapehu Street and Tongariro Street, so we propose changing it into a pedestrian mall.
This will create a safer environment for people and opportunities for more outdoor dining space and places for people to enjoy the amazing lakefront. We see the opportunity for the grass area to be extended to encourage people to ‘linger longer’ in the area and enjoy the natural vista that is on offer. The area could also be used for events and it is likely there would be an increased area available to be leased by the hospitality businesses that currently front on to Roberts Street. We plan to use that part of Lake Terrace for a much wider path along the lakefront for pedestrians and cyclists. It will link with the existing lakefront path and flow through to a proposed new shared path along the Domain side of Tongariro Street.
Horomatangi Street pedestrian mall
Phase two of the Town Centre Transformation Project is the reorientation of the street network to shift local through traffic from Lake Terrace and Tongariro Street to Titiraupenga Street and Spa Road. It will involve intersection upgrades along Titiraupenga Street, including creating a cul de sac at the intersection with Horomatangi Street which is a crossing point for students at Taupō Primary School.
We are proposing to create a pedestrian mall on the eastern side of the intersection so the students only have one road crossing point to access the field. The Titiraupenga Street crossing point will be controlled by a signalised pedestrian crossing. This will also have the added benefit of acting as a school drop off zone. The main objective for creating a small pedestrian mall area here is to ensure the safety of the children.