Forty-four metres of construction fences at the heart of Mount Maunganui have been transformed into environmental message boards by creative young artists.

The artwork will be celebrated tomorrow at Mount Enviro Fest.

The free event runs from 11am to 2pm on Mount Mainstreet, which will be closed to cars.

There will be buskers, a sustainable fashion parade, a best dressed bike competition, and an opportunity to ride hoverboards, unicycles, electric bikes, mini bikes, skateboards and scooters.


There are also other environment-themed activities to take part in and prizes to be won, including two brand new mountain bikes.

The event was born out of Mount Mainstreet wanting to beautify an "unpleasant" strip of fencing blocking the Phoenix Car Park development site on Maunganui Rd.

From there the seed grew.

Mount Mainstreet approached six local schools for help and each of the schools was given a genre and criteria to meet. The overarching theme was sustainability and protecting the environment.

Mount Maunganui Intermediate was given "wheels" as its genre, Mount Maunganui Primary School tackled "zero waste" and Arataki Primary School focused on "energy efficiency".

Students at St Thomas More Catholic School flexed their artistic talent on "take care of our water", Omanu Primary School illustrated "biodiversity" and Te Kura o Matapihi channelled "kaitiakitanga" (environmental guardianship).

"We are very grateful to the students and we're very proud to display their great pieces of art," Mount Mainstreet manager Ingrid Fleming said.

The artwork was put up on Wednesday morning and would be the centrepiece of tomorrow's festival.

Fleming said the event was an opportunity to share and celebrate positive environmental messages with the community and encourage awareness about the future.

She said the students went through an educational project while creating their art.

"They all had to brainstorm the genres and come up with a positive message to share with everybody that visits Mount Mainstreet over the next six months.

"It was an opportunity to experience a sense of community and responsibility in a place that they love to live in."

The art is currently being judged and prize giving will be held at Mount Enviro Fest at 2pm tomorrow.

The school with the best artwork will receive $400, runner-up $300, and third, fourth, fifth and sixth will get $200, $100, $50 and $25 respectively.

One standout student artist will also walk away with a $100 Mount Mainstreet voucher.

What is happening behind the fences?

Tauranga City Council is now well into the demolition stage of its Phoenix Car Park development project and is on track to complete the urban space in December – weather and other potential delays permitting.

As well as grass areas to play and relax on, and plenty of native trees and plants, the new space will feature a drinking fountain, water feature, bike racks and a bike repair station.