Te Ara Tahuhu Walking Street
THIS UNIQUE WALKING STREET RUNS THE LENGTH OF THE PRECINCT, FROM THE CPO BUILDING ON QUEEN STREET THROUGH TO BRITOMART PLACE, PASSING THROUGH TWO OF BRITOMART'S MAJOR SHOPPING ZONES.
Te Ara Tāhuhu is the central pedestrian street that bisects the Britomart precinct from east to west. Its name comes from the Maori word for ‘ridgepole’, the backbone of the traditional meeting house, reflecting its importance as a central unifying element for the precinct.
Beginning on the steps of the old Chief Post Office, Te Ara Tāhuhu runs through the Britomart Transport Centre lobby and out into Station Plaza. This is the location of the ‘volcano’ fountain, whose intermittent steaming references Auckland’s still-recent volcanic past.
A series of sculptural lightwells along the walking street admit daylight into the Britomart train station below. The 10 cone-shaped lightwells represent the 10 main volcanic cones in the Auckland region.
Beyond Station Plaza, the walking street runs through central shopping zone The Pavilions, home to a number of high-end fashion and specialty retailers. This area is also the site of a valet parking drop-off point, located on the corner of Gore and Tyler Streets.
Across Gore Street, Te Ara Tāhuhu meets Takutai Square, the precinct’s main gathering place and the site of many public events and festivals.
From the Square, the walking street carries on through Atrium on Takutai, the nine-storey covered gallery between the Ernst & Young Building and Westpac on Takutai Square. Here the walking street is lined with shops and daytime food outlets.
The Atrium is also the site of the eastern entrance to the Britomart Transport Centre underground train station. Just beyond here the walking street emerges onto Britomart Place, opposite the Britomart Car Park Building.