Wednesday, July 17, 2013

#2073 ... Taking Notice

A series of posters describing the work on the underpass in Buckle Street. Here's some background on the project. When the National War Memorial was first built in 1932 it was highly visible from most areas of the capital. At that time there was a proposal to create a boulevard to link the memorial to Courtenay Place. This never eventuated and, while still highly visible, the memorial has become isolated in a semi-industrial zone as the city has grown up around it. In 2005, the Crown acquired land on behalf of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage on Buckle Street, to create a New Zealand Memorial Park across the road from the National War Memorial. This park was to join the adjacent National War Memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior as a major focal point for New Zealanders to commemorate sacrifice during time of war. Project planning for the Paterson-Tory St Bridge has proceeded on the basis that Buckle Street could be placed in an underpass should funding become available to do so. This means that the Buckle Street Underpass at Memorial Park fully integrates with plans to construct a bridge around the Basin Reserve. On 7 August 2012, the Government announced the National War Memorial Park, including putting Buckle Street underground to remove the traffic that currently separates Memorial Park from the National War Memorial. This will create a new, unified National Memorial precinct. Development of the Park is a key part of the Ministry for Culture and Heritage’s commemoration of the centenary of the First World War, and the completed New Zealand Memorial Park will be in place by ANZAC Day 2015. This will improve the setting of the National War Memorial and strengthen the heritage value of the entire area. It will also heighten visitors’ experience of the National War Memorial and improve the safety of pedestrians, cyclists and the schoolchildren who currently cross Buckle Street at grade.

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