WDC puts up sign for kindy – After NZTA refuses to play

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Children at Oamaru’s Glen Warren Kindergarten were so concerned people would not be able to find their kindergarten, they took matters into their own hands.
While on a walk around Oamaru several months ago, the children took an interest in the various road signs around the town.
They expressed their disappointment to teacher Yvonne Gillies that there was no sign on the corner of State Highway 1 and Torridge St to direct people to the kindergarten.
So, staff approached the New Zealand Transport Agency and asked to have one installed.
The kindergarten now has a sign up, but it took longer than expected after the NZTA refused to install one, as it did not believe the kindergarten’s proposed sign would benefit the community.
According to NZTA guidelines, community benefit information signs are classed as advertising signs.
All signs on state highways are controlled by the NZTA Signs on Highways Bylaw, which says advertising signs on highways require written consent from the NZTA.
Instead of being installed on State Highway 1, the sign was put up on the corner of Reed and Torridge Sts by the Waitaki District Council staff last Thursday after the children at the kindergarten wrote a letter to Waitaki Mayor Gary Kircher and invited him to the kindergarten to explain the situation to him.
Mr Kircher said it was disappointing the NZTA declined to install a sign on State Highway 1 but was pleased a satisfactory outcome had been reached.
“Our guys have pushed it, so we’re glad they have one and we have been able to help them out in that particular way.”Ms Gillies said she was proud of the effort the children put in to get the sign installed, which she said was a valuable learning experience.
“The children watched it go up … they were the leaders with it. “For us, it was about children building relationship with the mayor and the community,”she said.

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