News | 17 January 2023

Explore Wellington’s arts spaces by bike

Check out some of Wellington’s artist-friendly and bookable community spaces and projects at sites by bike on two inaugural active artists e-bike tours this month.

Two women on bikes.

As a Wellington City Council Aho Tini 2030 Arts, Culture, and Creativity Strategy initiative, the tours are specifically designed for those in the creative sector needing everything from permanent rehearsal to temporary project spaces in the wider city. 
 
The tours start at Switched on Bikes, with free e-bikes and helmets for those who need them, and will visit sites in the central city, with one tour also covering the eastern suburbs and the other the southern suburbs. 
 
Some of the community spaces on the tours include the Central Park apartments, Vogelmorn Precinct, Newtown Community Centre, National Hockey Stadium, and Evans Bay Yacht Club, with kai stops at Innermost Gardens and the Mount Vic Hub. 
 
Wellington Deputy Mayor and keen cycling enthusiast Laurie Foon says combining an arts tour and bikes is the perfect way to experience the creative spaces of the city. 
 
“Aho Tini literally means the weaving of the threads that bind us through culture and refers to our strength as a community, which is demonstrated by our investment, support and partnerships with mana whenua, stakeholders and the creative collective of Pōneke.  
 
“As part of the Aho Tini strategy, consultation with the creative sector in 2021 showed artists wanted access to spaces where they can work, collaborate, develop, perform and showcase their talents – and that’s what we’ve been doing. 
 
“With Silver Noodle Soup being based at the Wellington Hockey Stadium and Benchspace at Central Park Housing’s community space, we’re facilitating the creative sector in Pōneke into unconventional places to meet their needs – and there is potential for much more out there. 
 
“So, get on your bike and join us to see what’s going on and where, and what could also be a potential creative space for you and your needs.”  
 
Aho Tini Programme Manager Sophie Jerram says the Council has been busy working with custodians of places that can be matched with artist needs and enabling spaces to be available and affordable in venues around the city.   
 
“Unseen common spaces are relatively plentiful in the wider city, we just need to think differently about space needs, and then broker community spaces for our creative sector who need them for short-medium term or one-off projects. 
 
“E-bike tours are common around the world, I’ve done one in Lima, Peru, as well as Copenhagen, so we thought it would work well here too. It’s a great mode of transport to show spaces, while having some fun and a positively creative experience in the city.” 
 
The tours are on 26 and 27 January from 9am – 1pm. Maximum of 15 riders per tour, with bookings on a first in first served basis, and a reasonable level of fitness is required. 
 
To book email your name, phone number, emergency contact details, and whether you’d like to borrow an e-bike, to arts@wcc.govt.nz by 23 January 2023. More tours will be run if there is interest. Or, find out more through the Active Artists Creative Spaces Tour programme (177KB PDF).