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Council urban design team leader Crystal Filep said contractors would install a range of pavers in the Octagon for the next six weeks.
The pavers had smooth and rough finishes, came in four colours and would be laid in straight and herringbone patterns, she said.
The trial would help decide what type of pavers to use when replacing existing brick pavers in central Dunedin as part of the council's $37 million Central City Plan.
The pavers would be installed along the footpath from upper Stuart St, in front of St Paul's Cathedral, to George St, in front of the Civic Centre, and would be in place for a few years, Dr Filep said.
The trial would reveal how the new pavers will "hold up'' in different weather conditions.
Feedback could be given to the council by November 17, she said.