Thirst-buster unveiled

Hutt News, April 5, 2016

Allan Brown, left, and Seaview Marina manager Alan McLellan watch as Wellington City Councillor Sarah Free holds the lever down to give a drink to the creator of the prototype water fountain for the Great Harbour Way cycle/walkway, Carl Longstaff of Metal Art Ltd.

Allan Brown, left, and Seaview Marina manager Alan McLellan watch as Wellington City Councillor Sarah Free holds the lever down to give a drink to the creator of the prototype water fountain for the Great Harbour Way cycle/walkway, Carl Longstaff of Metal Art Ltd.

Adults, kids and their four-legged friends have been catered for in the design of a drinking water fountain for the Great harbour Way.

A prototype of the hardwood and metal fountain, with arcs of water triggered at two height levels and a dog drink bowl at the base, was officially unveiled at Seaview Marina on Wednesday.

Allan Brown, who for more than eight years has been lobbying for the 70km cycleway and walkway right around the Wellington harbour edge and sections of coastline at either end, said in 10 years’ time there might be as many as 35 of the drinking fountains dotted along the route.

Brown told Rotary Club of Hutt City members at the fountain’s launch that Great Harbour Way proponents set themselves e initial tasks of “winning hearts and minds” and then getting planning work done.  Though he and Rotarian Linton Adams had grimly joked at the outset they would probably not see the cycleway in their lifetimes, there had been significant wins.

Around $45 million is budgeted for a 3m wide sealed cycleway / walkway between Petone and Ngauranga and Thorndon and Hutt City Council was getting on with Eastbourne and Bays/cycle/walkway/seawall improvements.

Brown said another task was signposting the inner harbour route “so that people knew they were on it” and could visualise its potential.

But rather than boring signboards, they hit on the idea of branded drinking fountains that humans and canines could sup at.

The Rotarians commissioned Seaview frim Metal Art Ltd to come up with a design.  The brief included that the fountain would have to withstand Wellington’s weather, ‘corrosive coastal conditions, and vandals.  It also needed to be low-maintenance.

“We think {the result is} the world’s best water fountain.  History will be the judge,” Brown said.

Brown said infrastructure that carried the name of community groups tended to be treasured more, so any organisation able to come up with a $1000 contribution would have one of the fountains named in its honour.