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Nelson Clock Tower

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Rebekah Joy
Rebekah Joy
Tuatara on silo3.jpg

Great weather, nice people, an array of restaurants and boutique shops, Nelson really does have it all. Take a stroll down Trafalgar Street and notice the cute Victorian buildings, the flowering baskets. Listen to the buskers perform, the smell of coffee that emits from the numerous cafes.........hang on, what’s that? The concrete monstrosity that sits on the corner of Trafalgar and Halifax Street is half finished, drab and been noted as one of the ugliest clock towers in the world.

The biggest thing that lets Nelson down is glaringly obvious, the hideous concrete clock tower. Abandoned three quarters of the way through (apparently, residents complained it was getting to large) large steel poles extend out the top of it.  Depressingly, there used to be a gracious old clock tower that was torn down in the name of progress and surely the ugliest of New Zealand's buildings was erected.

Clean it up Nelson!  Obviously if you live here you stop noticing how ugly it is. Although over the years several artistic suggestions to beautify this blight on the landscape have been put forward to the city council. A mosaic with mirror tiles reflecting the Nelson sunshine was one idea, someone else came up with a giant tuatara climbing the tower, I like the prospect of spray painting it similar to the English guerilla artist Banksy.

However, approaches to the NCC regarding the possibility of doing something with the tower have been met with little enthusiasm. Resource consents, earthquake risks, strict health and safety legislation and funding have been cited as reasons why the clock tower should stay as an eyesore. 

 Looks like Nelson is stuck with it, unless somebody can graffiti it in the dead of night




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