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Air quality tests at Mt Cook School show traffic fume levels within guidelines

Results of air quality monitoring at Mt Cook School show that pollution levels from vehicle exhaust fumes fall well within health-based standards.

The Ministry for Culture and Heritage commissioned the six-month project following concerns from the school about the impact of a proposed park in front of the National War Memorial in nearby Buckle Street.

The Ministry has delayed making decisions on the design of the park until the impact of one of the options – moving Buckle Street closer to the school – could be assessed.

The National Institute of Water and Atmospheric Research (NIWA) tested the levels of fine particulate matter (PM10), carbon monoxide (CO), and nitrogen dioxide (NO2).

The findings showed concentrations for all three substances were under the National Environmental Standards for Air Quality, and the Greater Wellington Regional Ambient Air Quality Guideline.

A public health analysis from Environ Medical Services Ltd concluded the likelihood that a change would have adverse effects on health was extremely low.

The Ministry intends to issue a design brief for the park this month. Final designs will be available to interested parties for comment before they go before the selection panel in October.

The realignment of Buckle Street is only an option at this stage, depending on which design is chosen. If any major change is proposed there will be opportunity for public comment through the resource consent process.

The Memorial Park will join the adjacent National War Memorial and the Tomb of the Unknown Warrior to create a cohesive ‘memorial precinct’ as a major focal point to commemorate New Zealand’s sacrifice during times of war. 

The Wellington City Council is a co-funder of the park and Transit New Zealand is managing the construction. The budget of $18 million includes purchase of the land, road construction, landscaping, design, and project management.

Updated on 23rd July 2015