The Te Ara I Whiti – Light Path or Nelson Street cycle path transforms a redundant piece of motorway infrastructure into a playful and sculptural piece of cycling infrastructure threaded through the inner city motorway junction of Auckland, New Zealand. The design intent of the project was to create a hybrid space that supports its intended function as a cycle path but also enables exploration, discovery and occupation.
See how the path was painted:
Transport minister Simon Bridges said: “The cycleway, which has been built in the midst of Auckland’s central motorway junction, is New Zealand’s most ambitious piece of urban cycling infrastructure ever built. The cycleway will transform Auckland’s inner city cycling network.”
The path enables a journey and episodic experience that engages with both the infrastructural landscape of the motorway and contextual views of the wider landscape. Three hundred individual LED light poles controlled by sensors are arranged as a spine down the city side of the path creating a living and breathing interactive urban light sculpture that responds to varying patterns and intensities of user movement.
Here is a demonstration of how the light works:
An average of now 848 cycle journeys cross the Lightpath each day since the opening in December 2015.
Design: LandLab landscape architects and designers & Monk Mackenzie architects
Client: Auckland Council, New Zealand Transport Agency