Category Archives: River

Hamilton River plan 1980s

In the 1980s Hamilton city leaders had a vision:

“The closure of Victoria St would allow the formation of an un-fragmented pedestrian core to the central city, and of course this in turn, would provide unhindered access across to the important Riverbank Development … An open space in this situation demonstrates two important points. Firstly, [bring] the riverbank into the central core. Secondly, road space setback and low rise historic buildings are used to avoid excessive sunlight ordinances on surrounding sites.”

“A riverside promenade provides the opportunity of creating a series of outstanding central city open spaces with river views. Low rise shops and offices facing onto the promenade would screen the backs of tail building, service courts and service lane.”

Over the last 3 decades the Novotel respected the ‘setback’. Ibis and Sky city have built their parts of the ‘promenade’and the ‘low rise shops and offices’. Both Ibis and Sky city built potential shop fronts along the promenade, BNZ supplies the ‘offices’ and there is a good mix of restaurant/bars over-looking the promenade/river.

But after decades, and new promenades being built, there is a 4m long missing connecting link at end of Alma St, the existing connecting path is less than 1m wide, and the city leaders vision has moved south, with many more millions of dollars being spent.It should be possible to bridge this gap and the cost is not millions, it’s staying power. The 1980s utopian idea of “A riverside promenade … river views … Low rise shops … facing onto the promenade” hasn’t left the minds of the city leaders. They just need a nudge to look at how close we are to have a Victoria on the River to Claudelands Bridge real-world promenade, and its huge untapped potential for visitor and tourism opportunities.

To finish my concepts drawings below show how permeable the cities link along the river could be.

 

 

Category: CBD, News, Projects, River

Bryant (St Andrews) Open Space for more people

In this posting, the wording in quotation marks is from the Hamilton Open Space Plan

“Open spaces bring economic benefits to Hamilton by making the area more attractive for investment, by providing sources of employment and by enhancing property values. Open spaces also offer free spaces for events and recreational activities.” And this is what is happening on the edge of St Andrews golf course with the Delamare Rd retirement village.

Delamare retirement village - Bupa Architectural Plans-2

Also the Hamilton Open Space Plan tells us “open space owned by Council covers approximately 10.8% of Hamilton city’s land area.” The lucky people of the Bryant area have over 20% of their suburb as open space and the area is not suffering “reduced public access to education administered open space” as are many other parts of Hamilton. It also has close to 30% of its streets having safer speed limits, allowing the people of Bryant safer access to their open spaces than under the old speed limit.

Bryant land use

The Hamilton Open Space Plan goes on to say in its section on urban intensification that it will “allow for a significant proportion of Hamilton’s increasing population to be accommodated by higher housing density in selected areas of the city; and in existing residential areas through intensification.” This nicely lines up with the Hamilton River plan – development St Andrews golf course which plans to “consider the feasibility of medium density development on the site of the existing clubhouse.”

Hamilton city river plan st-andrews

Increasing numbers of people mean healthy, liveable communities for generations to come. These are places people care about, especially with close-to-home parks in areas where people live.

Many people believe that everyone should have the opportunity to connect with nature, and support research that shows access to nature is an essential prescription for the physical, environmental, social, and economic health of a community.

Delemare age sign

Do we need to ask if younger people are given the same choices of housing types and locations as retirees?