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The contract to develop the pocket park in Queen Street has been awarded to Fulton Hogan and work will begin immediately with plans to have the new paved square ready for the town’s busy pre-Christmas period.
The successful tender was the lowest received at $477,332, a thousand dollars less than the engineer’s estimate for the project.
The new design includes the removal of the old Queen Street toilet block, which has long been a trouble spot in the view of the Police. The siting and design of the new facilities aims to discourage crime and undesirable activity in the vicinity.
The new toilet amenities will be on the northern edge of the park, allowing the park space to be opened up to Queen Street. The park has been designed to create a link through to the Forum area. This will provide a connected venue for the street markets while the paving, stage area, lighting and landscaping of the new square has been designed to accommodate downtown events and entertainment. Planter boxes with irrigation, new street trees and grassed areas will soften the brick and block paving and new street furniture will be installed as part of the contract.
CBD Councillor Terry Sloan says it will be an open, relaxing space that will look attractive and provide an appealing place to sit outdoors, handy for town retail staff taking a break and convenient for families visiting town.
“I am sure that shoppers and the surrounding retailers will be pleased with the results when the work is finished – hopefully in time for the busy weeks leading up to Christmas when there will be plenty of chances for the public to see the new space in use.”
“We hope inconvenience during the construction period can be kept to a minimum. Members of the public can use the nearby toilet amenities on the ground floor of the parking building, easily accessed from the Queen Street-High Street intersection, or those in the Countdown car park, opposite the library.”
The contractors will begin work in Queen Street on Monday.
The Council budget for this project was allocated in 2011 after councillors decided to go ahead with this project from the UrbanismPlus urban design plan for Blenheim.