Karangahape Road (commonly known as K’ Road) is one of the main streets in the central business district (CBD) of Auckland, New Zealand. The massive expansion of motorways through the nearby inner city area – and subsequent flight of residents and retail into the suburbs – turned it from one of Auckland’s premier shopping streets into a run-down red light district from the 1960s onwards.
Since the early 1990s there has been a move away from this image due to newly constructed apartment blocks attracting residents back to the area, as well as a general gentrification of close-by areas like Ponsonby. Now considered to be one of the cultural centres of Auckland, since the 1980s-1990s it has been undergoing a slow process of gentrification, and is now known for cafes and boutique shops. Alongside the few remaining shops and venues catering to the sex trade, K Road currently boasts an eclectic collection of shops, cafés and art galleries. At night its restaurants, bars and nightclubs make it a major part of Auckland’s social scene. K Road has become a centre for much of Auckland’s bohemian scene, with many venues for alternative music and fringe art. It is also known for its trendy op shops.
Since December 2009, on the first Thursday of each month in summer, K Rd will come alive with visual artists, performance artists, fashion shows, markets, photographers, musicians, and live performances. First Thursdays is a community conscious arts event that acts as a platform for emerging and established artists alike to showcase their practice.
Yesterday was my first visit to First Thursday Market at K Rd. Parking was a huge challenge and we almost gave up but luckily after making at least three circles we finally found a car park. The whole street came alive and many came dressed in vintage clothes transporting you back in time perhaps into the last century or more.
Before leaving for home, we had a late night dinner at a small Japanese eatery. It was a good evening time out with friends or family without having to burn a big hole in your pocket.
More about Karangahape Road from Wikipedia
K Road’s First Thursdays
Street art on K Rd
Origins and developments of nightclubs in New Zealand
Little Borneo Girl’s explore your suburb Challenge