Chal­lenges down the road

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

Some fresh think­ing and a ‘‘blank page’’ ap­proach are needed for a road­ing so­lu­tion for Nel­son, Tahu­nanui School’s prin­ci­pal says.

Last week Na­tional an­nounced that if re-elected it would com­mit $135 mil­lion to build the South­ern Link, which would run through Vic­tory to con­nect the An­nes­brook Dr and Haven Rd round­abouts.

Tahu­nanui School Prin­ci­pal Bar­bara Bowen said the lo­ca­tion of State High­way 6 on the Nel­son water­front was hav­ing a big im­pact on the Tahu­nanui com­mu­nity and she was pleased de­ci­sions were be­ing made.

She said with high vol­umes of traf­fic on Rocks Rd, Tahu­nanui Dr and roads in­clud­ing Mu­ri­tai St, it was be­com­ing ‘‘in­creas­ingly wor­ry­ing’’ in terms of chil­dren’s safety.

‘‘We don’t see that many kids bik­ing on the roads, they’ll be on the foot­paths,’’ Bowen said.

‘‘A lot of par­ents are bik­ing kids to school. We re­ally want to en­cour­age that, it’s so cool to see fam­i­lies out there but it’s only for those par­ents who are avail­able to bike their kids to school and the rest of the kids don’t get that op­por­tu­nity.’’

She said it lim­ited chil­dren’s abil­ity to be in­de­pen­dent, to bike to their friends’ houses, and ex­pe­ri­ence a ‘‘sea­side vil­lage’’ in Nel­son.

How­ever, she was well-aware of the im­pact an al­ter­na­tive could have on the Vic­tory com­mu­nity, which has come out strongly against the an­nounce­ment.

Bowen said it was im­por­tant not to play com­mu­ni­ties off against each other and she ap­pre­ci­ated Vic­tory schools and com­mu­nity groups had ‘‘ev­ery right to worry’’.

‘‘The way they’re talk­ing about it doesn’t sound very at­trac­tive. It

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