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Te Aro Tātou

A traffic circulation concept for central Wellington


Te Aro Tātou / Wellington City Council / 2021

Faced with population growth, increasing density, and a goal to reduce emissions from transport, Wellington is rethinking its transport systems and city streets.

MRCagney was asked to show Wellington City Council what a ‘fossil fuel free city centre’ would look like. Te Aro Tātou outlines a concept for a low traffic central city that has safe streets and people-friendly places.

Te Aro Tātou’s key move is a traffic circulation plan which sets out how private vehicles can and cannot move around the central city. A traffic circulation plan is an innovative solution that creates separate networks for private vehicles, essential services, public transport, and walking and cycling all within the same collection of streets. Te Aro Tātou is a crucial tool to help Wellington achieve its ambitious transport, placemaking and emissions reduction goals.

In Te Aro Tātou, the city centre is divided into ‘traffic cells’ that vehicles can access but not cut through, while walking, cycling and public transport networks have priority. In some cases, streets like the Golden Mile are for buses only with some after-hour access for approved vehicles. Other streets might become fully pedestrianised with no vehicle access except for service and delivery and disabled parking.

Traffic circulation plans are growing in popularity as a tool to transform urban environments. After they are implemented, people take fewer short trips by car, which reduces traffic, noise and pollution, public transport gets more reliable and city streets become safe and accessible for more users. MRCagney is at the forefront of developing traffic strategies that reduce the impact of vehicle traffic and free up space for people in city streets.

Download the full report here.

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