Mapua vehicle ban likely for summer
Vehicles will be banned from Mapua Wharf each summer, every Sunday and on public holidays under a proposal agreed to by Tasman district councillors.
The move is an amendment to the council's traffic bylaw, and will go out for public consultation from early November. It is expected that the ban will be in place for this summer.
Mapua and District Community Association vice-chairman Hugh Gordon and Mapua Wharf Precinct Committee member Devon Gallagher spoke in support of the proposal at the council's engineering services meeting yesterday.
Mr Gordon urged councillors to consider also closing the wharf to drivers every Saturday.
"The situation on the wharf in the weekends is chaotic, with cars coming and going and at times very dangerous. The cycle trail is under way, and the increase in cyclists is already very heavy, and numbers will only grow."
Mr Gallagher said Mapua had changed from being a chemical-infested backwater to a growing tourist destination, but one of the pitfalls of that success was user conflicts on the wharf between drivers and pedestrians.
The community could not afford another summer with a helter-skelter approach to safety, he said.
Activity planning adviser Sarah Downs said she hoped the bylaw amendments would be in place by December 20.
The new rules would be monitored by the council's traffic warden and control officers, and advertised via newspapers, flyers on vehicle windscreens, posters and signs at the wharf.
Tasman deputy mayor Tim King said it might be a good idea to fill the area with tables and planter boxes so it did not look like a car parking zone when it was supposed to be closed to traffic.
Boaties launching their boats at the Mapua boat ramp will still be able to drive across the wharf.
The one-month public submission period will open in late September, and a report is expected to go to the new council in early December.
- © Fairfax NZ News