High Street moving forward again…

On one of our rambles through the CBD we took the attached image (found on a column).
I think it is worth posting .
“A deeply inciteful observation on the CBD or an ironic statement, or to just make you smile?

Lichfield Street by Riverside Market.

Re Marketing The Christchurch CBD…
As a business owner I want to go “wow” at the clever sharp marketing campaigns promoting the CBD. 
I have found the ChchNZ “Explore” and “Baby Come Back” campaigns to be severely underwhelming.
I think they missed the mark with these campaigns… The campaign is aimed at young professionals, families, and retirees, with a hoped-for spin-off of attracting more tourists. It will cost $80,000, plus the cost of licensing the song”.   

These campaigns if I recall correctly were developed in house by ChchNZ.  They should in my humble opinion stop attempting to be a creative shop and focus on building the marketing research and innovative structures to deliver the messaging .  Let us leave (and seek out) the creativity to the passionate “HOT” creatives who are now populating our CBD.  

Thankfully it seems to have died a quiet death.  Please no more like this…..  Link Here:


What is new in High Street?

The security fencing from 135 High Street is gone, it looks amazing.  It is the first time in 9 years that I have seen it without a fence. Scary eh!

The Christchurch City Council now needs to sort out the angle parking and start “heavy duty parking enforcement”.  Did you know that for every hour one of the retailers in the street, parks in front of their own shop, you stop approximately 8+ of your customers from parking there. Why would you?   I think we need to have a quiet word to the retailers in the street… 



135 High Street is nearly finished.

Hi Ho, Christmas is next week, Wishing you all a wonderful Christmas Break. May the weather finally decide what season it is.


Photo taken in Amsterdam a few days ago by my niece, no words needed…

High Street, a Destination and a Distinct Area within the Christchurch CDB.

Over the last 9 years I have been watching, reading, attending meetings/workshops, writing and submitting on the endless flurry of initiatives by the CCC, Development Christchurch Ltd, Regenerate, Otakaro, ChCh NZ, CCBA (Central City Business Association) as a long term small business owner in the CBD.

It has become apparent that the new Christchurch CBD is not developing as promised, if one listens to the torrents of official words and reads between the lines.
Like any business owner I have kept myself up to date on what is happening in my home patch, (the south side of the CBD).  The following are my observations based on numerous CBD rambles.

When CERA/CCDU et al made up their minds to reduce the size of the CBD, they deliberately compartmentalised it by creating barrier streets. They had this idea that we should have small precincts. We should be thankful they recognised that business areas have individual characters, even that was a miracle. The official policy, the planned shrinkage of the CBD has been devastatingly effective, with in my view negative consequences. The changes to the roading layouts, the narrowing of lanes (ie St Asaph Street), changes to the one ways , complicated berms etc that has made driving into the CBD an exercise in perseverance.
However, the earthquakes, demolitions and lack of tenants has had a far greater influence in reducing the CBD size.

I am struck by a number of issues. I am keeping my observations to the south side as that is my area of interest.

Cashel Street – It was planned to be our prime retail strip. The area is looking tired and dated. Have you seen the state of the seating and the pavers? The building owners have invested heavily in the area with the Farmers market/Food hall, being the latest development. The new Ballantyne’s development is very nearly completed.
Where is the CCC commitment to ensuring the public space reflects the investments made in what is supposed to be our premier retail strip? The area needs a make over!
(The foot Traffic in Cashel Street, it has been reported, has seen a 40% increase flowing back through the city, according to the foot traffic counters, since the opening of the Farmers Market.  (CHCH Central City Business Association).  But: What was the base number it has started off from?


Cashel Mall is scruffy.


Cashel Mall  seating is tired and needs a steam clean.



CASHEL MALL 10am Friday

-I have also observed on a number of occasions that Cashel Street may have a number of lunch time pedestrians passing through BUT many of the retail shops had few customers. It does not look like they are as well supported as we all would have hoped and the official hype is telling us. The locals do not usually go to Cashel Street to shop.

-For the locals: There is a brand new Farmers, where we can buy socks and T shirts etc on Moorhouse Ave, where we can park for free. And the malls have any other basic amenity stores that we need.
The question in the CBD is: If we can not attract the locals in large numbers then how is it going to survive and grow? I suspect the answer is: as a Service area for business, Hotels and a small retail strip for the Tourists.

Lichfield Street/Tuam Street:  The new two street “buffer zone” separate Lower High Street and it’s surrounds from the Cashel/Colombo Streets retail shopping block.
My observation is that Lower High Street and SALT, (St Asaph, Lichfield and Tuam Streets, or a shortened version of South Alternative) needs to orientate itself as a destination area with its primary relationship being St Asaph Street and the area south to Moorhouse Ave. There is a lot of unrecognised renovation work happening in this area.   Note: it is the existing industrial buildings that are being re-purposed as an affordable alternative for the Christchurch small businesses. (The only reason this area survived post quake was that it was outside CERA’s  CBD cordon.)  It makes you wonder if  the city should have been repaired rather than hurriedly demolished.  But I would say that!

Looking at the specific Streets.

a. Lichfield Street, (the west block). The positioning of the new Justice Precinct/Police station seems flawed  On one side of the street we have a car parking building and the Justice/Police/Emergency services precinct on the other side.  Crossing the street from the Riverside market near the Car Park is to take your life in your hands, there is no safe crossing point in the middle of that block. The lay out seems to have created a service area  (Just passing through) that seems somehow unattractive. (I am not refering to the buildings but the feel of it.)


looking west on Lichfield St on the left is the Justice Precinct.  No reason to go here!

In the Lichfield Street Bus depot block: Again on one side of the block you have a supermarket with painted in-filled windows, a car parking building and an alley way to the Crossing, on the other side a large bus depot. There is something “industrial” about walking through there. (Not helped by the two “dirty thirty” buildings, near the Manchester Street corner).  Again it has become a service street.


Lichfield St, The  Bus depot on the right hand side.



Car park on the left hand side.


Uninviting Street frontage, Lichfield Street.

B: Tuam Street. If you walk along Tuam street, again you are struck by the positioning of the ECAN Building and the back Working entrance of the Bus depot. (As well as the lack of progress on 3 “dirty thirty’s” on the Manchester/Tuam Corners.) It is also an uninviting service street only at this stage.


Tuam Street,  no reason to go here, just passing through! Ecan on the left, Bus Depot on right.



Ecan on Lichfield Street,  Just passing through, no reason to be here.

Now let’s talk about Manchester street.
Another barrier was created between the central city and the East side. A wide boulevard (with currently large areas of green spaces). This is the area that is supposed to be the start of the central city revival with 20,000 people housed and living in the CBD. There is sluggish demand for the 3 level, small apartments and this area has not taken off.  It is a great grassed area, peppered with art works, maybe a few monuments are called for?


Manchester St Looking North.  Nothing to see here. Just passing through.

I suspect that Cashel Street and the newly created CBD will become a Tourist and Hotel area only.  Filled with cafes and Bars and souvenir shops (and too many coffee shops).

The locals will come into the CBD on occasion but really it is easier to shop on Moorhouse Avenue or any suburban mall of their choice.

Retail has become or is becoming a secondary function in the CBD. (The sharp operators are saying that online shopping is their primary role with the retail shop a secondary demonstration /promotion space.)

A barrier has been created between (lower) High Street and the Retail Strip in the CBD.  It is irreversible.

High Street is Bohemian with much more character, it is finally developing a life of its own.  It has a fast developing, quirky, innovative “left bank” feel.
This is similar to the High Street that we had, loved and now have redeveloped.
We have: Ice cream shop, second hand shop, bakeries, Bars, Restaurants, Little High, Architects, Lawyers, Hair dressers, barbers, bridal shops, clothes shops, Tattoo Studio, Vape shop,  to name just a few. Exactly the distinctive type of shops that bring the locals specifically into our patch.  All we need is more close parking opportunities.  The loss of multiple parks on St Asaph Street and surrounding streets is a deterrent to Christchurch Residents as it restricts their ability to drop by and enjoy our ever changing character.

I suspect that any general CBD marketing initiatives that the CCBA and ChristchurchNZ might come up with will not be entirely effective in our area.

We will have to develop our own distinct marketing that reflects our character, “grain” (the architects use this word) flavour and grit. The customers in the High Street/Salt district are not the same as the other “client” customers in the CBD. The marketing messaging should reflect our special bohemian vibe!

If you attempt to corral lower High Street into some artificial marketing construct the locals will shrug, carry on and mutter something like “tell him he’s dreaming”! (Respect to The Castle.)

Interesting Times!

High Street slowly Recovers….

What is new in High Street?

  • We are delighted to see the new plans by the owners of the Ace Video building in High Street. Progress was desperately needed. “Richard Newbold said they plan to repair and extend the building. In a one-year project, they will strengthen it and put in commercial space for a cafe or shops at street level, with an apartment on the first floor and another in a new top storey to be added.”  CHCH press, Liz Macdonald, Link Here: https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/116563410/new-owners-have-restoration-plans-for-dirty-30-building


    Ace Video building at 129 High Street, Repairs underway now after 8 years. 

  • Matt Stockman’s new building at 135 High Street is close to being finished.  Apparently the fencing comes down within a week or two.  I am delighted.

135 High Street nearly finished.  We are looking forward to the removal of the fencing.

  • The  8 Duncans Units (belonging to Messrs Peebles, Percasky and Inglis are slowly filling up)  (Utopia Ice, makes a wonderful chocolate and sea salt ice cream by the way, well worth a visit).


    Repaired Duncans frontage looking better!

  • Further down the street the “Watsons” frontage and new building is very close to being finished.  The final fit out is under way,  the fencing is already reduced. It is looking superb.

“Watson’s”.  Frontage restored by Shaun Stockman, with a 3rd floor and new building on the left.

  • I see that “we” are going to spend millions on another lane way.  It is the treatment of the lane ways that I have a problem with.  The design is an issue, they have multiple hard surfaces and are looking grey, cold, in shadow and unappealing, they help reinforce the Christchurch cold sou’wester winter wind.  (Traditional lane ways had texture, with bricks and the use of different surfaces and design.)  Incidentally the lane ways have never been explained to us, as to what their use will be, are they solely for cafes and bars? or are they mixed use? or retail?  who knows?.  What are we doing with them? many of the lane ways have not really taken off yet.    Link here: https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/117596415/end-in-sight-for-longrunning-christchurch-laneway-holdup. “An Ōtākaro spokesman said the budget of the lane way off High St could not be determined until its exact location was confirmed.” Ha ha read millions….
  • I see that we have an article about the Salt district winning an award. The Salt district (named for St Asaph, Lichfield and Tuam, the streets in the area) won best major place project at the Asia Pacific Place Leaders awards in Canberra, Australia.  “A group of local property investors and staff from Crown rebuild company Ōtākaro and city council promotions and economic development agency ChristchurchNZ are behind the idea.” CHCH Press https://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/business/the-rebuild/117836285/salt-district-wins-international-award“Salt district wins international award”,

I am reserving my judgement on this one. As an area it IS Gritty, but only a wee bit.

Maybe Little Salt to match Little High.

Hi ho Christmas is around the corner!

High Street Progress Glacial….

What is new in High Street?

  • Well…  This is a surprise, the CCC has seen reason and is not pushing ahead with the roading changes in our Lower High Street block.  The plans have been approved for the middle and upper block, with the finishing of the tram route looping across the old Para site back into High Street.

Chch Press 15th August 2019.  ‘A hearings panel has recommended the Christchurch City Council proceed with an extension of the city’s tram route and upgrade of the two blocks of High St between Cashel and Tuam streets.

The panel did not support upgrading High St between Tuam and St Asaph streets after hearing concerns by businesses and property owners. 

It will now recommend the council conduct further engagement on the design for that southern block.’  Link Here:  https://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/115016544/southern-high-st-businesses-heard-in-plans-for-street-upgrade


The back story behind this is that many of the  Lower High building owners got their heads together and decided that they really did not like the: one way, wide footpaths, large trees, loss of almost all parking… etc and decided to propose an alternative plan.  Our argument is it “ain’t broke, so why fix it”.  We accept that the infrastructure needs fixing  (they have had 9 years to do that…) but for heavens sake the street is not even open yet, it still has massive builders fences all over it,  leave it alone!  Fix the basics and give us 10 years and see how it goes… It might even save you some money.

Chch Press August 14 2019“Businesses and property developers want the city council to hold off rebuilding a central Christchurch road until they have a chance to get established.”

“Several property owners and tenants of the southern section developed an alternative design with DCM Urban Design. This would keep 32 car parks in the block and add a crossing point and dedicated cycle lane.”

Link Here:  https://www.stuff.co.nz/business/114951910/serious-concerns-about-plans-for-christchurchs-high-st

It was great to get all the building owners more or less in agreement.  That is probably a first time, in my time in the street, (Jeepers is it that long…. 1972 my parents bought this building…)  any way moving on quickly….

  • Matt Stockman’s Building at 135 is racing along. We are looking forward to it being closed in…

Progressing nicely.

  • The Watson’s building in the middle block of High Street is racing towards completion as well.  Rumour has it that as soon as that is finished Shaun Stockman will begin work on the Cotters building.


    Cotters frontage.

  • There is no further word on progress at 141 High Street…  still being costed I believe.
  • There is also no word on progress on the Ace video building at 129 High Street, sold at auction in May and we have not heard a whisper.
  • Work is proceeding on the frontage repairs to plaster and brick work on the Peebles Duncan’s Buildings.  It will be good to see the scaffolding off.  But that is slow careful work, that takes as long as it takes.  Its hard to do that sort of work in the winter it is either too cold, raining or dark…IMG_20190806_143130132.jpeg
  • We were very badly graffittied a few weeks ago, if they catch the silly lad I will charge him, he did $1000’s of damage to brick work and aluminum joinery.  I will not show you as I do not want to add to his “pride” in his work.

Incidentally I was in Manchester Street the other day, it is the first time in ages, as I rarely bother going into the city now.  This is the new wide boulevard that has been created by the powers that be ie CCDU/Regenerate or what ever they call themselves now….  this was supposed to become a “well used and popular walkway,”  from memory this was 4 o’clock on a friday…   hum  looks a bit deserted to me.    I feel sorry for the building owners down there, Manchester St access is now problematic. I suspect those buildings will need to be repurposed in the future. Residential on upper floors, might work.


This boulevard is not well used, yet.

  • A Cathedral debate has started up again.  This time the Roman Catholic Cathedral in Barbadoes Street is to be demolished.  What bugs me about this, is that they are using the infamous  Cer Section 38 as an excuse.  The Section 38 legislation has been a disaster for the city.  We also had problems with it, we were given 9 days to prove we did not have to be demolished.  They are the reason many buildings were rapidly pulled down. (60% of the CBD).  I accept that the Church has a problem with the building but this is not the right way to go about it.  Another solution needs to be found.  It is a nicer building than the one in the Square.  I would like to see it taken over by another organization and either left as it is, it is a fabulous tourist destination, or partially repaired.   I fail to understand why New Zealander’s have so little interest in the Heritage we have.   Chch Press. Link Here: https://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/news/115031528/emergency-power-that-took-over-700-christchurch-buildings-is-still-in-force    “The Catholic cathedral is being demolished under a now scrapped emergency earthquake power. What is a section 38 notice, what did it do to Christchurch and why is it still affecting the city?”.
  • IMGP1652.jpg


    To be demolished!


Hi Ho, its off to work I go, actually I need to let the plasterer in as we have a small repair on the back of our toilet block.





Recovery In High Street drags on and on and on….

What is new in High Street?

Well this is getting interesting, finally after 8 years,  sort off…. for some people…..  hum…. with a few qualifications…….

  • Consortium group has opened some of their rebuild Duncan’s units and the first tenants have started to move in.  Link here: https://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/business/the-rebuild/112221576/businesses-open-in-restored-section-of-christchurchs-historic-high-st     This means that the road will soon ???? be opened up to one lane traffic for about 30 meters towards us than close again at our end of the street.   There is still some tarting up to do on the frontages. But positive signs of progress here.IMG_20190410_111318198_HDR
  • The steel portal frame is being installed in the dodgy frontage of 141 High Street, this is excellent news and it is good to see some progress here. This will at least reduce the fall zone of the frontage of this building.  Though I suspect it will not open that part of the street.  I am waiting with baited breath for the day the horrible bay window comes out.  Apparently the windows that came out of 135 are being put back into this unit to return it to original!

    Steel portal frame starts to take shape.


    The bay window is to be removed and the steel in the frontage is starting to go in.

  • The steel frame at 135 High Street has begun to take shape. Excellent progress here. Looking forward to seeing the final building.


    Steel framing taking shape at 135 High Street

  • The Cotters building further down High street has been reduced to the frontage only and the Watsons building  now has tilt slab walls in place.
  • The Ace video building at 129 High Street is up for auction on the 30th May.   A dirty 30 building.  Finally…….  Once again a building owner holding up progress…This should never be allowed to happen again…..
  • We have finished our frontage plaster work repairs,  if you look closely you will see that all the pretty bits are back on!  We did rather take our time…… Our thanks to Dirk Passchier for his skills and assistance with this.  I notice he has autographed one of the ledges….
  • We are still stuck between the fences, 8 plus years on…..

From this in 2011


…..To This, All the plaster work repaired in 2019


  • Incidentally can any one explain to me how or why the CCC has allowed 3 different engineering solutions to be used to repair the 13 remaining Duncans Units. They are effectively one building. I suspect that the Building Act has failed in its purpose here.  My understanding of the Building Act was that One Engineering solution is required for a building ie When the Resource Consents for strengthening were granted I understood that a collaborative approach was required. But what would I know?
  • By the way, the CCC has finally decided to turn our end of the street into a one way section, a plan that has been bubbling away for the last 30 years, …Deja vu,   It has all sorts of pretty bumps and paving strips, cycle lanes, 8 m wide footpaths on the west side and 5 m wide on the dark cold side east side, oak trees that get 30 m high when mature,  placed in front of one of the few heritage facades left in the city, (that drop leaves and sap, which they never sweep up).  There are also very very few car parks. They also are under the delusion that High Street will be used for cafes and bars and that we require lots of outdoor seating areas.  They obviously have never sat in the Street when the easterly is blowing.  Drat I forgot, that is most of the time.   As you can gather I have reservations about this idea…. Link here: https://ccc.govt.nz/the-council/consultations-and-submissions/haveyoursay/show/234
  • ps  I am delighted to see the slipway into St Asaph Street being reopened, oops that is the one CERA in their infinite stupidity closed 3 years ago.   I also note that the tram will not be coming down lower High Street.  All ok with me. Press:  https://www.stuff.co.nz/the-press/business/the-rebuild/112726984/proposed-revamp-of-christchurchs-high-st-will-extend-tram-line
  • pps Health and Safety alert:  I look forward to the day that Lime scooters are forced off our footpaths after I had a close encounter with 2 young woman on the one scooter outside the poly tech building the other day.  I did not see or hear them coming at 30 km an hour when they yelled at me to get out of the way.   Hum…  I think their mum’s needs to paddle their back sides….  whoops not allowed to do that any more either… How this situation has been allowed to occur defies belief. I am lucky not to be visually impaired, those scooters must be a real worry for the Visually impaired community….

Ho Hum interesting times….

News Flash:

As of 8am this morning, May 22nd 2019, we have had the cordon removed on the North side of the building.  This has been in place since 2011.  It took only 8 years…


Fences as at 21May 2019

Be very afraid, if you own or are located next to a heritage building this could happen to you…  I would strongly recommend that if you ever end up in our situation, run.  The law and Councils do not protect you nor are the “powers that be” interested in your welfare…

Sad but true….


Fencing has been removed from 141 High Street, now the frontage is “secured”. 22 May 2019

High Street closed for 8 years and still counting….

Who would have thought it?  Eight years on from the 22nd February 2011 quake and lower High Street is still closed.

Today is a funny day in Christchurch, everyone is very thoughtful as we consider our changed lives, altered personalities and priorities. We are not the same people that we were pre-quake.  (Who would have thought that I would be an unemployable bum ?  Along with many others).

There is a “don’t bother me attitude” forced upon us by dealing with: recalcitrant Insurance companies,  Government and Council authorities that became our enemy (by imposing their agendas and will upon us).  As well as their being a deep suspicion that every-one is out to get you and make money from your misery or use your situation to their own advantage.  Paranoid perhaps?

Too many deals were done behind closed doors with a lack of consultation with the people concerned.  ie US.

As always in February my thoughts are with those families that lost loved ones and also with those families still struggling to deal with botched repairs and in some cases, not having even settled with their insurance companies.

I have written once before of the cost to the Christchurch economy of the High Street closure.  My current guesstimate is that it has cost the local economy about 110 million dollars. (Back of an envelope calculation).  Was this really the correct way to handle a heritage street?   The answer has to be a resounding NO.

Incidentally I have been watching the building closures in Wellington, there is a steady stream of closures as they are assessed following the Kaikoura shakes.  There is a noticeable lack of nationwide publicity about the issue.  Looks like they are trying to keep the panic levels down. But I would say that!

What is new in High St?

  • We have currently scaffolded our frontage as we do some tidying up of our plaster work.  We are repairing some of the detailed plaster work that we lost with the collapse of our frontage.  It is a bit like trying to put back a jigsaw puzzle with a few bits missing.  We will do our best but it is not a perfect match!

    The plaster work is being repaired and tidied up.


    The view from the top of the scaffold, along the front of the Duncan’s Units. The frontage wobbles!  Lower down the new frontage and canopy is being rebuilt for the Consortium group.

  • The Consortium group is hard at work trying to get their 8 units finished. I note that their roof level is not the same as the other units left in the row.  Weird!  There was an article in The Press 4.2.2019 by Liz McDonald: link Below.


    The back of the Consortium units is looking good.


  • The Unit at 141, next door to us on the right, is still at consenting stage.  Which is great news.  There still appears to be a two tier system at the CCC consenting department.  If you are a large developer, the perception is that you can do what you like.  If you are a small building owner they treat you very differently.  There also still appears to be no over-sight given at the CCC about speeding up emergency repairs. ( As well as there still seems to be no interest in the livelihoods of the surrounding building owners impacted by derelict and abandoned building and endless road works and new “improved” design.)  I note that we now have approximately 50% ? less on-street parking spaces in the CBD post quake.
  • IMG_20171127_093846325

     141 High St, Still looking like it did on the 22nd February 2011


  • On the other side at 135 the foundations are appearing out of the ground. Slowly but surely.
  • The Ace Video building on the left is one of the “Dirty 30’s” and progress with that one is currently unknown. Again a ridiculous situation.


    130 and 135 High St.

  • Further down High Street the Cotter’s demolition is underway. Photo of back below. And the rebuild of the Watson’s building is now taking shape.

The Cotter’s demolition is well underway, only the frontage will be saved.

Ho humm,   8 years on…… I am off to grind some plaster work at the top of the scaffold.  I hope it does not get to 31 degrees today.   My job today is voluntary, unpaid plasterers’ labourer. You gotta do what you gotta do!



High Street Rebuild Saga drags on….8 years

So What is new in High Street?

  • The good news is that the supporting steel is starting to come off the 8 Duncans Units that Consortium owns.  This is massive progress after 8 years.  (Rumor has it that 6 of the 8 units are leased already.) P1010509
  • The screw pile driving has begun on the vacant site next door, at 135 High Street.  13 meters of “bog”, than a shingle bottom, I have been told.  Good!IMG_20181117_111838004_HDR
  • The access situation for our building has gone from bad to worse.  If that is possible.  We note that the CCC  via CTOC (Christchurch Transport Operations Centre) has approved a plan created by: our rebuilding neighbour and Whites Traffic Management, too close off 70% of our frontage for long periods of time over the next year without consulting us.  This includes taking 7 meters of our 10 meter frontage and leaving us a 3 meter walkway on the right hand side of our frontage, (under our other dodgy neighbours frontage), restricting access to our front door and, as far as we can work out restricting access for our tenants upstairs to some mysterious entry method yet to be devised.  We think it may involve a helicopter.  I think not…. watch this space, I am still awaiting consultation….  This saga began 8.10.18…
  • There is increasing unease in the CCC about the lack of progress with the CBD build and the fact that most of us avoid the CBD like the plague. Are they really surprised?
  • I have just wasted a few days doing another submission on Earthquake Prone Buildings.   I do not think that any one in the “Beehive” is listening.  As evidenced by this article a few days ago about a Christchurch Building owner in Dunedin who has been told to:

“Build it or sell it, Christchurch property developer told”


ho hum, another day in a very weird city

ps:  I am watching the Lime scooter saga with incredulity.  Really? 27km per hour on the footpath? I thought that footpaths were for doddery old buggers like me with dodgy hips/ knees/ eyes/hearing etc.  Drat, and I thought I would be safe on the footpath from some kid with fast wheels.  I hate to think what our disabled population are thinking of this idea, they are fast, silent and damn scary.  It does look like a heck of a lot of fun, but on the footpath at 27km, gosh even my mobility scooter does not do 27km,  I wonder if I can soup it up?