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Backlash: There was pushback over these Buckingham St signs

By PHILIP CHANDLER

Arrowtowners are seeing red over new speed signs outside the town’s historic miners’ cottages.

Queenstown’s council originally installed large blue, red and white 30km signs in Buckingham Street in late August after resolving to reduce the town centre’s speed limit.

After an outcry, it replaced them with smaller circular red and white signs.

But, many locals still believe they’re an eyesore, particularly in one of the South Island’s most photographed streetscapes.

Local mayor Jim Boult says because Arrowtowners wanted a 30kmh speed limit ‘‘we have to have speed limit signs’’.

‘‘I’d be the first to say that the original ones that were put up were overkill, so they’re a thing of the past.’’

Local museum director and former Arrowtown councillor David Clarke admits the new ones are better, but still objects to their placement.

‘‘It’s the most photographed streetscape in the South Island, you don’t need a bloody 30km sign in the middle of your photo.

‘‘We cleared traffic from in front of the miners’ cottages for photo opportunities, so everyone gets a nice view.’’

Replacements: City Hall replaced the first speed signs with these smaller versions, but its still copping flak

He questions council’s contention that locals wanted the new speed limit — ‘‘no one goes more than 30km, anyway, because you can’t, really’’.

‘‘Are the police going to be sitting here, enforcing it?

‘‘What’s the point of it all?’’

Clarke says the signs also fly in the face of a council-commissioned plan for Arrowtown’s town centre to become ‘shared space’, similar to what’s in front of Queenstown’s Eichardt’s Private Hotel.

He suggests landscaping or speed humps could be used to make motorists slow down.

‘‘We were trying to avoid all these traffic signs everywhere.’’

scoop@scene.co.nz