Tuesday, May 21, 2024
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Queenstown Streets Shine Bright

A stroll through recently upgraded streets in the centre of Tāhuna Queenstown reveals so much more than previously about the area’s traditional stories and rich history.

Queenstown Lakes District Council General Manager Property and Infrastructure Tony Avery says a series of cultural elements have been integrated into the design of features such as paving and light poles.

“The time and care that our iwi partners have devoted to this project really bring our local heritage to life. For example, the kōwhaiwhai design on the light poles produced by Kāi Tahu artists represents travel in the form of waka that traversed lakes and rivers, transporting people, food and resources such as pounamu.”

He says selected poles also display the word whero used during the 19th century gold rush referring to gold or anything brightly coloured.

“Rees Street’s upgrade combines pounamu inlays with green granite paving and green light poles. This contrasts to the whero theme along Beach Street with golden paving, gold poles and bronze inlays.”

Paving at the crossroads of Rees and Beach streets features a pattern of overlapping pounamu and whero signifying traditional trails and the intersection of both cultural heritages and two industries.

“With new stone benches and native trees completing the look I’d encourage everyone to take a moment to enjoy the town centre with fresh eyes next time they visit.”