Paving of cultural significance extended in Waikanae
Work to extend distinctive paving in Waikanae town centre has started in Frater Lane and is weather permitting is expected to be finished by the end of December 2020.
This work is part of the cultural thread project, one of the Councils’ town centre improvement projects aiming to create a vibrant, diverse and thriving town centre for Waikanae.
Group Manager Infrastructure Services Sean Mallon says the long-term vision for Waikanae is that the town centre has an arts and cultural focus and will meet the needs of the surrounding community with local services and community and commercial activities.
“Some residents and people visiting Waikanae don’t even know we have a Marae or where it is and this project is aimed helping acknowledge and celebrate our iwi heritage and connection,” Mr Mallon says.
“The cultural thread project reflects the historic village connection with Whakarongotai Marae and incorporates distinctive paving of cultural significance with inspiration drawn from Whakarongotai Marae wharenui.
“The paving tells a story celebrating the position of the Marae within our community.”
Work in Frater Lane is the second stage of cultural thread project, in 2018 stage one was completed linking the commuter carpark with Mahara Place.
“We’re now working on stage two which will see a continuation of the distinctive paving from the Marae entrance through Frater Lane. This links the paving design to tāngata whenua and the journey from the Marae to the final resting place at Ruakohatu Urupā.”
Mr Mallon says stage two work will stop short of the SH1 entrance to Frater Lane which will be completed separately, as part of the Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s investment in the town centre to make SH1 a local road.
Other work already completed as part of the town centre improvements work in Waikanae includes the upgrade to Mahara Place in 2019 which provided a much needed facelift to the square.
Future plans for Waikanae include improving pedestrian access and connections to the railway station, making Mahara Lane more visible from SH1 and establishing better cycling and walking connections to the river.