Sometimes, the work for cycling in Auckland is all “two steps forward, one step back”. The situation is certainly improving – yet every now and then, we face setbacks (like the recent Ngahue Drive/Lunn Avenue road upgrade) which remind us that cycling can still slip through the cracks.
Albany Highway is promising to do no such thing. Cycle Action Auckland is enthusiastic on seeing the plans for the proposed works on this mayor road in Albany, on the North Shore. Over more than 3km, this road is to be significantly upgraded, with Auckland Transport now seeking the designations for this future work.
Unlike so many other of these road upgrade projects in the past – which started AND ended with “add some more traffic lanes and some signals” – Albany Highway is proposed to get off-road cycle paths, on both sides, with much of the paths separate even from pedestrians! Even better, at every intersection, cyclists will either be able to smoothly return onto a cycle lane on-road – thus keeping their priority over the side road traffic (before then returning onto the path) – or alternatively, will be able to cross on signalised or raised pedestrian crossings, for those who prefer to keep some added distance to cars.
In short, the proposal looks suitable for just about everyone – from novices or school children (there are three schools and one university in the area) to commuter cyclists who may be in more of a hurry. While the proposal is just at Notice of Requirement stage right now, and it will be a while before it gets implemented, Cycle Action Auckland is very happy to see these kinds of plans come forward “on their own”. It shows that Auckland Transport and road designers like GHD are increasingly aware of how to provide for cyclists. So even if Albany isn’t your patch, it’s good news for cycling in Auckland.