Cuba Street was closed to traffic in 1965 to remove the unused tramlines. During this time a campaign started to keep Cuba Street closed to traffic. In 1969, the Cuba Street pedestrian mall was officially opened by then mayor, Sir Francis Kitts.
Designed by architects and town planning consultants Burren and Keen, the Bucket Fountain was constructed as part of the Cuba Street Pedestrian Mall. Before the fountain was installed in Cuba Mall, an off site mock up was created to test and adjust the tipping buckets.
Cuba Mall has received two facelifts, in 1980 and in 1998, but the Bucket Fountain continues to remain remarkably faithful to its original construction (although regular maintenance is required to keep it operating).
The Bucket Fountain is recognised as one of Wellington’s quirkiest and most well known landmarks. The Wellington City District Plan includes recommendations on how best to develop Cuba Mall. Within these recommendations the plan states, “The much maligned/much enjoyed sugar-scoop bucket fountain should resume pride of place in the Mall.”
In November 2003, the Bucket Fountain was removed from Cuba Mall so that it could be painted and repaired in time for the world premiere of The Lord of the Rings: Return of the King. The revamped fountain is brighter and splashier than ever!
Go to this link to see how it works