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Heart of Dunedin, a group made up of central city retailers, building owners and members of the public, says it worries about the potential impact of some of the plans included in the preliminary concept design for George St.
The Dunedin City Council will vote on the preliminary design - which is part of a planned $60 million upgrade of the central city - for the street from Moray Pl to Albany St at a planning and environment committee meeting tomorrow.
Changes include restricting traffic to one-way travelling south between Frederick St and Moray Pl, installing a counter-flow cycle/scooter lane and a paved carriageway between Hanover and St Andrew Sts, where cyclists and pedestrians would have priority over motorists.
An online poll of about 4600 Otago Daily Times readers found 71% were in favour of the design.
Heart of Dunedin spokesman Jason La Hood said the group had only recently been shown the design and still needed time to process it but felt restricting traffic to one direction would not make the area more vibrant and attractive.
"Our initial thoughts are that a one-way George St will act as a further impediment to visiting the CBD."
Single-vehicle journeys would be halved under the design, which was not the best outcome for retailers in the central city, he said.
"You can have the smartest-looking CBD but if you can't easily access the area then retailers will suffer and the area will lack vibrancy."
There were concerns no more parking had been provided to offset the substantial parking provided by bulk retailers on the fringe of the city.
Both Heart of Dunedin and the council wanted the same outcome, which was to improve the central city so it was an attractive and accessible destination to spend time and shop, he said.
Central city advisory panel chairman Cr David Benson-Pope said it was natural for retailers to be concerned about vehicle movements and access to their businesses, but history, including in Dunedin, showed an improved physical environment was good for everyone, businesses included.
No options were off the table at this stage and the Heart of Dunedin as well as the general public would continue to have an opportunity to give feedback as the design progressed, Cr Benson-Pope said.
"I'm really quite buoyed by the positive reaction to the initial design and I just hope lots of people get involved."