Bond Street brightens up for business

23 January 2015

From next week Bond Street will be transformed to energise and draw people to this central city street.

People will be able to kick back and relax in the new outdoor lounge spaces and enjoy a range of performances and events from the shipping container stage. The road will be painted with a vibrant red polka dot pattern to create a temporary shared space for pedestrians and vehicles.

The Council has worked closely with Bond Street businesses on this project with an aim of attracting more people to the street, raising the profile of the businesses located there, improving the perception of the street and then measuring the effect of these changes to determine the economic impact and benefits.

Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown says the project is a great example of how the Council can work collaboratively with local businesses and retailers to make positive changes and bring the city to life.

“The local retailers have a vision for the street and we’ve worked with them to help make it happen,” she says. “It’s a trial that will demonstrate how changing the use of street space makes a livelier and attractive destination.”

“The shared space in Bond Street is important for servicing local businesses and we expect to see many more people on foot relaxing and shopping too."

Councillor Nicola Young, Portfolio Leader for Central City Projects, says she’s delighted local businesses are supporting this project.

“Inner city lanes can make a real difference to the city's look, and Bond Street is a good start - with more lane upgrades to come."

Local retailers applied for funding from the Council’s Wellington Economic Initiative Development Fund and have used it to develop a Bond Street brand and website bondstcollective.co.nz

Dale Rangihaeata from Mojo Bond Street says the street’s location is perfect for people looking for a place to grab a coffee and relax in the sun.

“We’re in this sun trap right off two of the busiest streets in Wellington and had an idea for how we can make the most of these elements for a while. We asked Council to look at our situation and they worked with us to create this project for summer.”

Roy McFarlane from The Canteen says the project is a boost for the businesses and retailers.

“We’re excited about the energy this project will bring to our street, we’re passionate about the area and feel the Council has stepped up and supported us to make some creative changes.”

During the summer pop-up, there will be a range of community events aimed at enlivening the street. The line-up includes local musicians, cycle maintenance sessions, children’s story time, hairdressing and barbering sessions and displays about the history of Bond Street.

The changes to the street are expected to be made overnight on Monday and Tuesday, weather permitting, so people should be able to check out and enjoy the new-look street from Wednesday 12.30pm. The street furniture will be set out for public to use from 8.30am to 5.00pm daily with events running until 27 April 2015.

The majority of the $100,000 budget for the project has been spent purchasing assets that will be re-used in other projects and events around the city.

Vehicles will still be able to use the street throughout the project.