Traffic through Napier's CBD will be diverted as the upgrade to the Central Business District continues.

Stage four of the Napier inner city infrastructure upgrade along Hastings Street starts today, two weeks ahead of schedule.

The intersection of Tennyson and Hastings Streets will be closed to traffic for some weeks. The road will be fenced off but there will still be pedestrian access to shops and cafes.

Businesses in the area have been working on an exhibition, The Art Distraction, to encourage people to keep visiting them. The exhibition will be launched next week.

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The CBD upgrade continues the work which resulted in an upgrade of Hastings Street's underground infrastructure, and the street surface between Albion and Emerson Streets last year.

People will soon see wider footpaths, a revamped parking layout, new planting and street furniture.

Planning for this part of the CBD infrastructure upgrade began in 2010.

It is part of a city wide response for areas known to be susceptible to flooding, Napier City Council Director Infrastructure Jon Kingsford said earlier this year.

All new pipelines will connect to the Marine Parade stormwater outfall, underneath the viewing platform.

The last section of the upgrade scheduled for this year, from the Hastings- Tennyson Streets intersection through to Browning Street, is expected to be finished by October.

For more information about the overall project, go to www.napier.govt.nz keyword #prjhastingsstreet