John Wilson Ocean Dr has reopened to motorists. A lone
protester watched in silence as First Security operations
manager Garry McLennan unlocked and removed two bollards at
the St Kilda end of the windswept seaside drive at 11am
That was the signal for the four drivers parked in single
file to motor along the road, which had been closed since
First in line was Alan Waugh, in his 1970 Volkswagen Beetle.
''I used to love coming up here, park up in the sun during
the winter ... I have definitely missed it.''
Alan Waugh, in his 1970 Volkswagen Beetle, was the first
motorist waiting to drive on the reopened John Wilson Ocean
Dr, in Dunedin, yesterday.
He planned to park in his favourite spot, near Lawyers
Head, and read the Otago Daily Times
while having lunch.
He also supported the Dunedin City Council's decision to
limit the opening of the drive between 11am and 3pm each
weekday, and to keep the speed limit to 50kmh.
''It is a good idea to stop all the boy racers doing the
Not supportive of the reopening was Roy Robertson, who held a
placard denouncing the decision.
''They should leave it the way it was,'' he said.
First Security operations manager Garry McLennan removes
bollards at the St Kilda end of the road at 11am yesterday.
Photos by Stephen Jaquiery.
The drive would be better left for the pleasure of
cyclists and pedestrians, and closed to motorists, he added.
Collette Collett had just finished walking her dog Benson as
the bollards were removed.
She enjoyed the road's peace and quiet, and would no longer
walk her dog on it when it was open to motorists.
Cr Bill Acklin, who argued for the road to be reopened to
vehicles, said it was important to remember the reopening was
a trial that depended on motorists and pedestrians showing
respect for each other.
While there was division among the council on whether the
road was being reopened in a satisfactory manner, with some
believing the 50kmh speed limit and lack of satisfactory
separation between cars and pedestrians was not ideal, the
council decided to open it in that manner in the interests of
keeping down costs, he said.
Roy Robertson holds a placard denouncing the Dunedin City
Council's decision to reopen the road.
The road has reopened as an interim measure, while
initiatives are sought to help fund the cost of a layout that
would reduce speeds to 20kmh.
If no solution is forthcoming by May 1, council staff are to
report back on whether the 50kmh speed limit is appropriate,
or whether an alternative is required.
Dunedin Clutha police area commander Inspector Greg Sparrow
said patrolling of the road would form part of police
tactical deployment and prevention measures for that area.