Brightwater gets a Lego makeover
A miniature version of Brightwater’s main street came to life as school kids used Lego to show how it could be improved.
Better footpaths, bus shelters and trees lining the street were some of the ideas put forward by Brightwater School students.
As part of a Tasman District Council initiative, students from Room 10 brainstormed possible ideas for the upgrade before splitting off into groups armed with boxes of Lego to bring their creations to life.
A better variety of shops, a pizza restaurant and an animal shelter were some of the more colourful ideas thrown into the mix.
Jimmy West, 11, said Ellis St needed a bus bay outside the church for the Waimea Intermediate kids, and access into Centennial Park from the main road instead of having to go around into Lord Rutherford Rd.
He also thought a tree house could be erected in the empty space next to the Four Square to give kids something to do.
West said the activity was fun, because ‘‘you get to design something that is better for Brightwater’’.
Erin Macleod, 11 said that they needed more stands for those watching games at the Wanderers Rugby Club and a safe place on the footpath for elderly people, especially those in wheelchairs.
The group also had some ‘‘random ideas’’, like a pizza shop on the main road.
‘‘It’s real fun to decorate Brightwater,’’ Macleod said.
‘‘And make a difference in the town,’’ Jaymee Clements,11 added.
The initiative was led by staff from Opus International Consultants who would be planning the upgrade of Ellis St.
Opus International Consultants planner Reuben Peterson said the exercise was a good way to get connection with the students.
A former Brightwater School pupil himself, Peterson said the kids were coming up with lots of good ideas.
‘‘It’s amazing, I think a lot of people probably discount kids ideas a bit, but they are coming up with stuff I would expect anyone might come up with and more.’’
Brightwater School acting principal Glenda Earle said that kids were able to look at things from a different perspective without any preconceptions.
‘‘To get the student voice coming through and getting some ideas from the kids as to what can happen with Ellis St is really cool, it gives the kids a purpose.’’
The initiative was held ahead of a public meeting on the enhancement of Ellis St for Brightwater residents, who would get a chance to see videos of the kids’ ideas. The meeting is at Brightwater School on September 20 from 3 to 6pm.
Brightwater School pupils contribute to the re-design of their main street with the help of Lego. Pictured from left is Jaymee Clements 11, Amy Julian 9, Keira Crichton 10, and Erin MacLeod 11.