Gloucester Street pedestrian Open Day

Release Date: 12 July 2012

Since reopening to traffic nearly 4 weeks ago, Gloucester Street has provided a well utilised route through the CBD – cutting right through the middle of the CBD Red Zone.

The road has been operating as a one way street for vehicles travelling East to West but with limited pedestrian access.

Many people have been drawn to the area; eager to view this previously unseen part of the city.

To allow pedestrians to safely view these areas without having to negotiate traffic, part of Gloucester Street will be closed to traffic on Sunday 15th July leaving it open to pedestrians only.

The section of Gloucester Street between Manchester Street and Durham St North will be closed to traffic from 1-5pm.

Timed to coincide with the end of the school holidays, the Pedestrian Open Day will allow family groups and other visitors to wander around the area, including the Cathedral. The cordon fencing currently in place at the Gloucester/Colombo Street intersection will be moved within metres of the Cathedral for the 4 hour event.

There will also be displays showing images and information about the buildings that once stood on the now vacant sites.

CERA and the Christchurch City Council have been working on plans for the event for two weeks. CCC will close the road under the Local Government Act in order to make the event possible.

Since the end of the national state of emergency last year Christchurch City Council has supported efforts to reduce the central city cordon, and more recently to prepare Gloucester Street for the open day. This has included coordinating the Council's projects with CERA and other agencies who provide services and infrastructure in the central city.

Projects have included checking and repairing roads, footpaths, wastewater (sewage systems), city water supply system, and carefully planning traffic management.

Council Transport and Green Space Manager Alan Beuzenberg says Council staff have been working hard to repair damaged infrastructure in the central city red zone.

"Council staff have worked closely with CERA, often taking on board new challenges and solving problems quickly. When people go into the central city they will see that the rebuild of our roads and underground services is definitely underway."

Since the February 22nd quake members of the Territorial Forces have been manning the cordons, managing the flow and safety of thousands of people accessing the Red Zone each week.

NZ Defence Force currently have 16 personnel working on four cordon access points to the CBD Red Zone, these Territorial Force soldiers are drawn from all over the country and are released by their full-time employers to work on the cordon.