A blog about Auckland City, its streets, and culture shock
Someone once told me that Ponsonby is about halfway from the city centre to Grafton.
Yes it is:
Here we go again. This has been going on since a few years now. AT wants to do some roadworks to improve Queen Street for cyclists. And hopefully make it a bit less of the miserable wannabe arterial street it is now.
Coming soon on Queen Street?
If that image doesn’t give you the chills, you probably never cycled near one of these before.
Back when I started this blog I made this handy flyer to remind myself how you’re supposed to get around in Auckland.
A handy reminder
Things are improving, slowly, but they’re also coming from a deeper low than I first realised. There’s this deeply ingrained assumption everywhere that you normally drive, while walking is some obscure corner case not really worth catering for.
Let me count the ways walking is awkward around here:
New Zealanders and Belgians have quiet different ideas about what a run-of-the-mill residential area should look like. Of course the Belgian way is way better than the New Zealand way. And not just because I happen to be from Belgium.
This is the coolest auction of the year.
As seen on TradeMe
During my walk around Hobson Street I encountered those two little cottages between all those towers, as silent witnesses of a time when St. Matthew’s church was still dominating the skyline of Auckland. One of them is going under the hammer. They’re unique in Auckland, and not just because the somewhat surreal setting.
Last time we looked around in Belgium, this time we will have Google Earth hoover over Auckland.
What’s so different between cities in Europe and Auckland? Auckland lies within what used to be the British Empire. Long story short, the British liked their cities Extra Large.
Lots of people think I’m weird. I’m interested in weird things. I can spend way too much time on silly things. Like writing a blog nobody reads. “Normal” is overrated. It is often just a fancy synonym for “boring” anyway.
One of the particular things which can mesmerise me for hours are maps. New maps. Old maps. Old aerial photographs. Relief maps. Following how the streets and railways find the best way through areas with a lot of relief. And so on.
Today we have aerial photos, more specifically stills from Google Earth. Let’s have a look at what cities look like from above.
Brussels, centred around the Grand Place