Auckland Council wins Waka Kotahi award for creating a safer Emily Place

Publish Date : 08 Dec 2021
Emily After 1
Emily Before 1

Auckland Council’s entry Creating Safer Streets - Emily Place has won a Waka Kotahi Agent for Change award, announced this week.

The Emily Place pilot saw Auckland Council working with the community to trial ways to make the street and neighbourhood reserve a safer and more pleasant place for residents, visitors, and businesses.

It was funded through the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s Innovating Streets programme with support from Auckland Council’s City Centre Targeted Rate.

Waitematā Local Board Chair Richard Northey said when the work began a year ago: “Emily Place has a rich history. It was the location of Point Britomart and where the original shoreline used to be. Jutting out in the form of a huge point and then dropping in sheer cliffs into the Waitematā, it was one of the most thrilling pieces of our harbour landscape.

“The winding, steep terrain and wide streets made it particularly dangerous for pedestrians. With some changes, we can create an attractive walking connection between Britomart Station and the universities, and a reserve that provides an intimate outdoor space for residents and workers to enjoy.”

Auckland Council Project Lead, Claire Davis explains: “This pilot was the first in a series of stages to improve Emily Place. This pilot gets some immediate improvements in place and will help inform more permanent upgrades for Emily Place in the future.”

Davis is delighted with the award. “This is a wonderful acknowledgement of our mahi in Emily Place, and the value of tactical urbanism as an approach to renewing our city spaces in a collaborative way with the community,” she says.

Kathryn King, Urban Mobility Manager at Waka Kotahi says: “Our vision is an Aotearoa where children can bike, scoot or walk to school independently, explore their neighbourhoods safely; and where you can hear birdsong instead of car engines, and streets are pleasant, sociable places.”

“Innovating Streets for People has enabled councils around Aotearoa to trial new approaches to reimagine their street spaces.”

Ten councils were awarded Agent for Change trophies in recognition of their outstanding contribution to transforming street spaces.


Notes from Waka Kotahi

The learning from Innovating Streets for People is being taken forward into the Streets for People programme 2021-24. Details about the new programme can be found here.

The Agent for Change awards judging panel was:

  • Victoria Carter and Patrick Reynolds, Waka Kotahi Board Directors
  • Adam Currie and Nola Smart from Generation Zero
  • Skye Duncan, Director Global Designing Cities Initiative, NACTO.
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