Timaru’s MyWay parklet helps reduce emissions, thumbs-up from locals


A new “parklet” initiative on Timaru’s main shopping street is proving immensely popular with the community, all while enhancing accessibility and reducing emissions.

This innovative trial project, funded through Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency’s Transport Choices programme, provides the community with an economically viable, eco-friendly transport option. To date people are responding enthusiastically.

Timaru District Council Mayor Nigel Bowen says the parklet has brought public transport right into the heart of Timaru for the first time and was raising the profile of the service.

“Ensuring public transport is accessible and desirable is a really important part of making people want to choose environmentally friendly options,” he says.

Timaru Mayor Nigel Bowen in the bright, dry and friendly parklet:

“The parklet is making a positive contribution to our community and helping generate awareness with its prominent branding and informative signage. I’m delighted at the uptake by our community.”

Prior to the parklet being installed on Stafford Street, there was an absence of suitable stopping locations, so MyWay vehicles bypassed the main shops. However, since the installation of the MyWay parklet, patronage has surged.

Within the initial two weeks of its opening in March this year, 500 people were picked up or dropped off 372 times at the parklet. Comparing this data with the figures from a few months prior, the service has observed a daily increase of more than 200 passengers. 

The MyWay service has experienced a 29 percent rise in ride requests and a 36 percent increase in completed trips. The service recently celebrated a ground-breaking milestone, recording its highest ever tally of rides in a single day – 826.  

In the previous year there were only eight days with more than 600 rides completed. 

"All our contributions, both big and small, towards a healthier transport system have an impact,” says Kathryn King, Manager of Urban Mobility, Waka Kotahi. “Projects like the parklet in Timaru are important in contributing to more vibrant communities. Interim measures like this parklet can build confidence and highlight the benefits really quickly – in turn prompting confidence for a more permanent change." 

The MyWay parklet is currently undergoing a trial period by the Timaru District Council. Seeking valuable input from the community, the parklet's first location, positioned outside Farmers on Stafford Street, will be monitored over winter 2023.

Insights from the community's feedback will play a vital role in determining a permanent location for the parklet.

About MyWay

MyWay is a pioneering service operating in Timaru, providing affordable and environmentally friendly transport solutions. With a strong focus on accessibility and customer satisfaction, MyWay aims to revolutionize public transport and contribute to a sustainable future.

Find out more about MyWay(external link)

About Waka Kotahi Transport Choices Programme

The Waka Kotahi Transport Choices Programme is a government-funded initiative aimed at promoting sustainable and accessible transport options throughout New Zealand. By investing in innovative projects, the programme endeavours to create a transport network that caters to the evolving needs of communities while reducing the environmental impact.