OPINION: I wish to endorse Laura Turnbull's letter re the CBD plans.
Our city needs a covered pedestrian mall in Esk St. The one- way drive along that bumpy street, with few available parks and no incentive to stop and visit those shops, is a disaster.
Why have those shops been regularly closing since that system was introduced? Most of them don't open until 9.30am or 10am and it is no place to take visitors shopping.
A covered walkway could have lovely boutiques and restaurants, a play area for children and even a good hall with tables and chairs, or rest areas for shoppers - somewhere we could proudly take visitors.
There are far too many open spaces in these plans. In our climate, these would rarely be used.
I have visited Toronto, in Canada, where they live under snow for four months of the year.
They have built underground malls and shopping areas where you can walk for miles and have easy access from railway stations and bus stops. That city is planned around weather.
We must accept that our climate is not outdoor friendly, even if we don't have as much snow and frost as the North Islanders think.
These plans seriously lack parking buildings. Many businesspeople park all day in Gala and Kelvin streets, where residents find it difficult to get access to their properties. It is particularly difficult to access offices and businesses in lower Gala St.
There are plenty of ''family- friendly'' beautiful parks at Queens Park and Otepuni Gardens, where people can sit outside for lunch or let children play when the weather is fine. The central business district is for business not family-friendly areas.
- The Southland Times