In a couple of weeks work will start on a $5.5 million upgrade the Devonport wharf and Marine Square as part of a larger $24 million upgrade to Devonport which also includes a new library. One thing I find most interesting about the upgrade is that it will see a number of existing carparks removed and replaced with an enhanced urban space as well as more parking for bikes and scooters.
The new boardwalk will connect the wharf, Marine Square and Victoria Rd and will transform the eastern side of the wharf into a significant public place on the water’s edge, with space for outside dining and for people to gather.
Construction of the boardwalk provides the opportunity to reconfigure and refurbish the tenancies in the front part of Devonport Wharf. Auckland Transport will be offering new, larger tenancies with a food and beverage focus.
Marine Square will be upgraded from a car park to an integral and appealing part of the village’s attractive new gateway. The reconfiguration will provide a more functional layout in which pedestrians, vehicles and cyclists can safely coexist.
Thirty-five long-term car parks will be removed and a variety of landscaping will take place to visually frame and enhance the special character of the area.
Commuters will be encouraged to make the switch to public transport or alternative modes of transport such as biking and/or walking during and after the upgrade.
Auckland Transport has plans to increase the number of commuter buses to the wharf and the number of scooter and bike parking spaces.
Here’s an image of what the upgrade is meant to look like after it’s been completed.
It looks pretty good and much better than the current arrangement while providing a slightly more direct route from the village to the wharf which will be good for pedestrians.
To try and encourage people to shift from driving to the wharf, AT are running a competition to give away a scooter
To provide a little impetus, Auckland Transport is running a competition for all Devonport residents who want to change to another mode of transport. The prize is a sensational scooter courtesy of Scootling.
To go in the draw, simply fill in the entry form (PDF 112KB) and put it in the entry box at the Information Centre in the Devonport Ferry Terminal before 5pm on 28 February 2014.
The winner will be drawn by Devonport comedian Paul Ego at 10am on 1 March on the wharf. Anyone who has entered the competition will be welcome to attend. The winner will be notified the same day as the draw.
I’m all for encouraging people to shift modes but I wonder how effective this will be and wonder what kind of precedent it sets – will it be something expected at all future station, wharf upgrades. Further how many of those driving to the wharf are coming from outside Devonport? Lastly it begs the question of why it is being done for this upgrade yet there wasn’t something similar done for the recent opening of the new Panmure interchange.