Busi­nesses back street pro­posal

The Leader (Nelson) - - FRONT PAGE - HAN­NAH BARTLETT Costs

Busi­nesses at the top of Trafal­gar St are game to try a pedes­trian-only zone this sum­mer.

Howard ‘‘Harry’’ Mor­ris, who owns Harry’s, said ‘‘not much has changed’’ since the busi­nesses had last met about the pro­posal, as now it was up to the public.

A trial has been on the cards for some time but the Nel­son City Coun­cil re­cently said it would of­fi­cially fa­cil­i­tate a traf­fic-free trial, pend­ing feed­back from res­i­dents and busi­nesses.

Mor­ris said they were open to giv­ing it a go, and now it was up to the public.

He said they needed to know ‘‘sooner rather than later’’ as to whether it would go ahead though as out­door fur­ni­ture would need to be pur­chased by some busi­nesses.

He said the coun­cil hadn’t yet in­di­cated any spe­cific plans as to what the lay­out would look like but he ex­pected that would be­come clearer af­ter public con­sul­ta­tion had fin­ished.

They were also await­ing clar­ity on what the liquor li­cens­ing would be given the new space, but said the coun­cil had in­di­cated a dis­counted rate would ap­ply for the trial.

The public has un­til 4pm to­day to pro­vide feed­back to the coun­cil on the trial, which would see Trafal­gar Street be­tween Sel­wyn Place and Hardy Street closed to traf­fic from De­cem­ber 1, 2017 to March 31, 2018.

Mor­ris said feed­back he’d been made aware of had been mostly pos­i­tive, and his in­stinct was it would ‘‘go ahead’’ this sum­mer.

As to how pop­u­lar the trial proved to be when put into ac­tion, how­ever, would be largely de­pen­dent on weather.

‘‘If it’s sunny it could be good, but if it’s like last year...’’ Mor­ris said.

But he said the hos­pi­tal­ity in­dus­try had fared well this win­ter com­pared with pre­vi­ous years, and hopes were high headed into sum­mer.

‘‘If the weather holds out it will be at least as good as last year, if not bet­ter,’’ he said.

The coun­cil will de­lib­er­ate on the feed­back and come to a de­ci­sion by the end of Septem­ber.

Money to fund the street clo­sure would be ac­cessed through the city’s CBD En­hance­ment Fund. * Sig­nage: about $1200. * Bol­lards or fenc­ing: about $5000-$30,000. * Planter boxes: about $2000 per pot­ted tree, ex­clud­ing main­te­nance. * Liquor li­cence ex­ten­sion sub­sidy for busi­nesses: about $4500-$7000. * Suit­able ta­bles and chairs would be pro­vided by busi­ness own­ers at their own cost.

MAR­ION VAN DIJK/ THE LEADER

Howard ‘‘Harry’’ Mor­ris says busi­ness own­ers in Up­per Trafal­gar Street are open to clos­ing the street in sum­mer.

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