Pupils in step for car-free day

Auckland City Harbour News - - News -

Dozens of chil­dren, par­ents and staff from Mt Al­bert Pri­mary School braved the rain to walk to school for World Car-Free Day on Tues­day.

The walk that started at Mt Al­bert’s Rocket Park was led by prin­ci­pal Enosa Auva’a and po­lice ed­u­ca­tion of­fi­cer sergeant Deane McEn­tee.

“We are re­ally en­cour­ag­ing the idea of walk­ing and al­ter­na­tive modes of trans­port,” says Mr Auva’a.

Or­gan­iser He­len Coyte, who has a child at the school, hopes the walk will be the start of a new walk­ing school bus route.

“We’ve been want­ing to set up a route from Rocket Park and this was a good chance to launch it and get some of the par­ents who come from this di­rec­tion to hope­fully put up their hands for a walk­ing school bus.”

Auck­land City Coun­cil se­nior road safety co-or­di­na­tor Claire Dixon says 13,000 chil­dren and young peo­ple reg­is­tered for Car-Free Day, in­clud­ing 1500 Dioce­san School for Girls stu­dents who also walked to school for the oc­ca­sion.

She says there are 3300 stu­dents in the city us­ing walk­ing school buses and more routes are be­ing set up.

The Auck­land Re­gional Trans­port Au­thor­ity’s strat­egy and plan­ning gen­eral man­ager Peter Clark says car con­ges­tion is one of the city’s big­gest is­sues.

He says there are now more than 5000 peo­ple us­ing trains to get to the cen­tral city ev­ery morn­ing, thanks to in­vest­ment by the gov­ern­ment and the re­gion into track and sta­tion up­grades.

Photo: JA­SON OX­EN­HAM

En­vi­ron­men­tally friendly: Mt Al­bert Pri­mary School prin­ci­pal Enosa Auva’a leads stu­dents in a walk to school for World Car-Free Day.

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