Council & City

Streets for People

The world’s most exciting cities have one thing in common – a vibrant city centre enjoyed by locals and visitors alike. Our Streets for People project aims to achieve just that.

We teamed up with retailers to throw a street party to celebrate the completion of phase two in August 2020.

A vibrant city centre will make Palmerston North even more attractive for work and play, provide more opportunities for locals and visitors to connect with the city and the people who live there and bring significant benefits for the local economy.

This project reimagines our streets as social spaces, where people want to shop, eat, attend events and do business.

Improvements include:

  • wider granite footpaths and kerbs
  • more seating and social areas
  • more green spaces
  • informal places to cross
  • resurfacing parking and traffic lanes
  • narrowing some traffic lanes to slow traffic
  • future-proofing our key utilities.

Stage two upgrades completed August 2020 

This stage of our Streets for People project upgraded the area of the Square between The Coffee Club on Main Street and The Cooperative Bank on Church Street.

The footpath in front of the shops is now double the width, with more trees, seating and outdoor dining space. However the work wasn't just cosmetic. A major part of the project focused on improving underground services. The biggest piece of work was upgrading the stormwater pipes, to prevent flooding in heavy rain.

What's next?

In June, Council voted to get the detailed design for the rest of the project completed before starting the next stage of construction.

Detailed design means the very specific engineering specifications like road heights, location of key services etc, are all identified. This work had previously been proposed to be done ahead of each construction stage. Doing all of it upfront means there is a significant cost saving to ratepayers as there are no surprises. It gives Council the flexibility to engage with the construction industry on the best options to deliver the works and allows for greater engagement with local retailers and building owners.

The design work will be done between August 2020 and April 2021, and then the next location for construction will be identified and engagement will begin ahead of construction.


The entire Streets for People project spans eight years and includes the Square, Main Street, Broadway, and small sections of Rangitikei Street and Fitzherbert Avenue.

The first part of the project was completed in 2019 and involved the Square-side of the street between Main and Church Streets by the Plaza. The shop-side of the street was completed in August 2020.

Find out more

You can read more about our plans for our CBD in the City Centre Framework and the City Centre Plan. You can also take a look at our City Centre Streetscape Plan which details our plans for the spaces and streets around The Square and Broadway Avenue.