Shared spaces in New Zealand urban areas
The concept of shared spaces is gaining popularity around the world as an innovative approach to streetscape design. Shared spaces are streets which have very little separation between road users; meaning pedestrians, cyclists, and vehicles literally share the road space. Traffic control infrastructure is often removed from shared spaces to introduce a degree of uncertainty to urban streets, necessitating a more careful and courteous style of driving with the aim of increasing safety for all road users. Shared spaces are beginning to appear in New Zealand cities. This thesis provides a context of this introduction of shared spaces into New Zealand’s urban areas and the issues that may affect the success of shared space in New Zealand. This includes examining what shared spaces currently exist and how well they are functioning, as well as any proposed shared spaces. Local authorities were contacted to evaluate the position of local government with regard to the shared space concept. Also, the purported advantages and disadvantages of shared spaces are investigated in a New Zealand-specific context to gauge the appropriateness of the concept for the country. It was found that well designed shared spaces could enhance New Zealand’s urban areas by balancing the needs of all road users and creating more pedestrian friendly public spaces. However, more research needs to be undertaken to investigate the effect that shared spaces will have in New Zealand, and also to find ways to aid blind and visually impaired people in navigating the spaces. Three types of shared space have been suggested and case studies have been used to apply these suggestions in public spaces in Dunedin and Oamaru.
Advisor: Strack, Mick
Degree Name: Master of Surveying
Degree Discipline: Surveying
Publisher: University of Otago
Keywords: Urban design; shared spaces
Research Type: Thesis