New town planning for NIP unveiled

Islands, Normal

NEW Ireland Governor Sir Julius Chan has announced the start of a new planning process for towns in the province.
The new process will affect Kavieng, Namatanai and Konos.
The announcement comes at the end of a weeklong consultation with all interested groups including women and the New Ireland Chamber of Commerce, engaging consultants, SPK, led by Iain Stevenson who is responsible for the whole design of the new Kokopo township in East New Britain province.
It is anticipated the centrepiece for Kavieng will be a walkway, or esplanade along the foreshore, where residents and their families could enjoy time together by the sea in clean, comfortable and pedestrian-friendly surroundings.
Sir Julius said the Esplanade itself would be the heart of a new leisure area, which will include small hotels, restaurants, a pedestrian mall, the reconstruction of a sea pool, parks, playgrounds, the renovation of the original district office, mooring facilities for island boats, and many opportunities for new
small businesses.
The leisure zone is based on an approach to modern township development that says a town has to be enjoyable for its own residents, before it can be truly attractive for visitors.
Sir Julius said a town that worked for its own people was the cake, but if others came to enjoy it too then that was the icing on the cake.
Other initiatives aimed specifically at making the life of ordinary residents more productive and comfortable include small retail centers in all residential neighbourhoods, new PMV routes and stops, trees and sunshades to provide shelter from the sun, a new market, with comfortable and clean facilities for both buyers and sellers and a network of local sports courts and fields, putting sport and exercise into every  neighbourhood
Sir Julius said unlike other towns which plan mostly for motor cars only, pedestrian streets, paths and footpaths would be prominently constructed to meet the needs of ordinary people who had no cars but conducted their business mostly on foot.