09 Apr 2018

Livening up your neighbourhood by holding a street party is about to get a lot easier.

Christchurch City Council is introducing a Streets for People initiative to encourage community groups and individuals to organise local street parties and get people together.

Crowds enjoying the Streets for People event in Cathedral Square last year.

Last year's inaugural Streets for People event in Cathedral Square brought thousands of people together.

It streamlines the planning process making it faster, cheaper and easier to apply for roads to be closed for a community gathering. Previously, applying for Council permission was more complicated, involving 60 days’ notice and needing to be publicly notified and then approved by a road closure sub committee.

Now only 30 days’ notice is needed and approval can be granted by a Council officer. The road closure won’t need to be publicly notified as long as 80 per cent of neighbours support the event.

The Streets for People process also provides a one-stop-shop of helpful information on the Council website for anyone planning a street party(external link), including advice and contacts for equipment hire, entertainers, health and safety planning, and small neighbourhood events grants that might be available.

While the Council part of the process is free, a Traffic Management Plan Provider will still need to be involved in the road closure, which carries a cost. It’s hoped that sponsors will be willing to support community events to minimise the expense involved. Potential sponsors can contact info@ccc.govt.nz.

The Council’s Urban Regeneration Manager Carolyn Ingles says the hugely popular Streets for People street party in Cathedral Square last October was aimed at inspiring communities to have their own smaller scale street parties to enliven their neighbourhoods.

“The Streets for People party was a big success and I’m excited that now we’re introducing a process that makes it easier for people to do the same thing in their local neighbourhood area.”

Council Community Support, Governance and Partnerships Head Lester Wolfreys says a street party is a great way for people to connect with neighbours and something the Council wants to encourage.

“The stronger and more positive our neighbourhoods are the more upbeat and resilient our city will be overall. These kinds of celebrations can be a great opportunity to bring people together, play some music, get out the face paint, or hire a bouncy castle.”

Organisers can hire the Council's trailer stage from Happyhire (info@happyhire.co.nz) and for additional advice they can contact the Council's call centre to be connected to a Community Recreational Advisor.

Council Head of Transport Richard Osborne says Streets for People showcases how various teams at the Council are working together to find ways to simplify processes, and support neighbourhood use of local roads in a safe and creative way.