It’s a funny little street that goes from nowhere to nowhere, just trundles along the edge of the creek from Chatham Road bridge to Griffiths Road bridge, providing no real service at all. I reckon that if Thorn Road, Orient Road and Newcastle Street were dead ends at the creek no one would be bothered; in fact, I think that people who lived on those streets would be happier as they’d get less through-traffic (especially when there’s a show on at the Entertainment Centre, when Bates Street becomes a handy and free car park).
The reason we have a Bates Street at all goes back to the early days of Hamilton North. This Google image gives a clue to its origins: it used to be part of Jackson Street, the street where Hamilton North Public School sits.
When Griffiths Road went through and the school was cut off from Smith Park and the rest of Hamilton North, Jackson Street was chopped into Jackson Street north and Jackson Street south. It stayed this way until 1976 when the northern section was renamed, according to the Herald of the time, “after the late Roger Bates, of Eddy St, Hamilton, who was an alderman from 1953 to 1965”.
At no time did Alderman Bates operate a motel off the main highway, murder anyone or assume his mother’s personality. You’re obviously thinking of Councillor Gerald Industrial, after whom Industrial Drive is named.