The Wellingtonista

Random stuff about Wellington since 2005

TAWA5 Most Missed

by Alan on November 20, 2010 in Architecture, Events, Festival, Food & Drink, Outdoors, TAWA

We loved you… and then you were gone. When will we see you again? When will we share those precious moments? (etc etc.) Here are some great Wellington things we miss:

Offbeat Originals

Offbeat OriginalsO, Offbeat! You gave us toasties, you gave us shakes, you gave us burgers. And you provided us with a quirky place to enjoy our nomz, with a soundtrack of bangin’ tunes from the past 40 years. But then you left us. Why did you forsake us?

Cuba Street Carnival

Carnivale!Hopefully one of the first things on Celia Wade-Brown’s agenda is to restore council funding to help fund this celebration of Wellington’s most colourful street. 2009 gave us bands, markets, food on sticks, carnival rides, drummers and a night parade – pretty much something for everyone. It was a beautiful thing to watch the streets come alive, and we want it back, NOW!

Manners Mall

Manners Mall / Victoria St 2010They put a bus lane through our heart. It remains to be seen how the re-bussing of Manners Street will turn out, but one thing’s for sure – we miss that public space, along with the loitering emos.

Pocket Parks

pocket parkRemember that lingering side-effect of eighties boom and bust – the pocket park? Buildings were demolished in a hurry, but new buildings didn’t always arise, sometimes for years. So rather than having a toothless gap a little park would be built, little mini-oases of greenery and seating on the Golden Mile. Over time, property developers and the gummint have had their wicked way with most of them (e.g., the corner of Grey Street & Lambton Quay; the corner of Willis Street & Mercer Street etc). Let’s have these back again! We can even help out by suggesting a few buildings to make way…

An Actual Waterfront Brewery Bar

Mac's Brewery, WellingtonYou know, rather than, as one reader put it, a “bar [that] is just a front for beer brewed by Cantabrians or Aucklanders”. In a perfect world, not only would we not think of a stupid Aussie bank whenever anyone said “in a perfect world”, but Tuatara would come forth from their hideaway up the coast and install themselves triumphantly in a waterfront brewery bar as the hop-handed sons of Wellington they truly are. And we would sit out front and sip their APA until the sun went down behind Te Ahumairangi…

Alan Macdougall

Dazza November 20, 2010 at 11:56 am

Pooh. These were all just recent, fly by night phenomena to us more experienced Wellingtonians. Manners Mall was just a flipping hindrance if you remember it as the useful traffic thoroughfare it was for most of its life.

My top 5 misses:
1 Trams. Except this time we would make them more comfortable and put proper waiting places mid-street, as they do in Amsterdam. We could do with some of the Amsterdam double-carriage bendy trams too, for rapid mass transit in rush hours.

2 Parking Places everywhere. None of them in stinky brutalist buildings owned by Hong Kong billionaires intent on ripping every last dollar from our screaming wallets.

3 A proper National Art Gallery with some dignity to it. The way our paintings are displayed in That Museum is a disgrace.

4 Old style coffee bars with carpets, and conversation, instead of strident music to please the staff and uncomfortable seating to move patrons on faster.

5 The annual multi-charity fair at the old Town Hall. It was beaut.

I have another five, too….

richardmaclean November 20, 2010 at 1:32 pm

Greetings folks – just a note that the Council never actually pulled funding from the carnival – I think the overall problem was that there was a dispute over whether we should significantly increase the funding.
Not sure if this link below will work – but the release tells our side of the story back in June.

Richard MacLean – WCC Communications

Alan November 20, 2010 at 2:38 pm

Thanks for the link, Richard: I’ve made a small change.

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