Auckland’s Te Ara I Whiti Lightpath has been honoured at this year’s 47th Annual Los Angeles Architectural Awards.
Hosted by the Los Angeles Business Council, the Awards honoured 45 projects ranging from civic buildings and transportation hubs to commercial office and creative retail space. Winners were selected by a jury panel representing a cross-section of top international industry experts.
Auckland’s Lightpath was awarded the inaugural ‘Tripartite Award’ alongside the Urban Design of the Yuzhu area in Guangzhou. The award was established within the context of the Tripartite Economic Alliance - a strategic alliance formed in 2014 to foster trade and political engagement between the global cities of Los Angeles, Guangzhou and Auckland.
The Tripartite Award for architecture and design deepens collaboration between the three cities as they strive for shared urban development and sustainability goals by acknowledging design successes.
Mayor Phil Goff says, “It’s fantastic to have the Lightpath acknowledged as a leading example of creative and functional design. It has helped make cycling safe and accessible in Auckland, and encouraged more people onto two wheels.
“Cycling has an important role to play in Auckland to help address our congestion issues and to meet our commitments to reduce carbon emissions. We are committed to getting more people on bikes and the Lightpath is a great example of the innovative thinking we need to make cycling attractive and safe,” says Mayor Goff.
The NZ Transport Agency’s System Design Manager, Brett Gliddon says the close collaboration with Auckland Council and Auckland Transport helped to deliver what was an ambitious project in a short space of time, and one that is now enjoyed every day by the public and has become a highly recognisable piece of Auckland infrastructure.
“The Transport Agency is proud to have worked with its partners to combine the architectural excellence of the new Canada Street Bridge along with reusing and revamping the existing Nelson Street motorway off-ramp.”
Auckland Transport’s Manager for Walking, Cycling and Road Safety Kathryn King says the Lightpath has become an iconic part of the Auckland landscape and an important link in Auckland’s ever expanding cycling network.
“Last year we had 45,000 new riders in Auckland, showing that we are becoming a city for bikes. The Lightpath leads onto the Nelson Street Cycleway and in 2016 we saw an 810 percent increase in people using that route to travel in and out of the city for work, study and just for fun.”
Initially conceived as part of the 2012 Auckland Council City Centre Masterplan, Ludo Campbell Reid, General Manager from Auckland Council's Auckland Design Office accepted the award alongside urban designer Henry Crothers from Landlab and architects Dean Mackenzie and Hamish Monk from Monk MacKenzie.
The Lightpath is a joint project between Auckland Transport, Auckland Council and the Government through the NZ Transport Agency and the Urban Cycleways Programme (UCP). The UCP is the Government’s $333m programme of cycle improvements from 2015 to 2018.