This Is Not A Busway…what you should be really getting excited about is the cycleway planned to run along Pakuranga Road and Ti Rakau Drive!

At least that is our attitude to the AMETI Plans for the Pakuranga area, which are intended to change this car-overwhelmed part of Auckland for the better. What started out as a bus priority project has grown. To a degree – if we are allowed to pat ourselves on the back – due to CAA participation in various Council workshops, the project now includes an off-road cycleway from Panmure to Pakuranga (and later on, onwards to Botany), dedicated to cyclists only. You will have a kerbed buffer between you and the busway / roads, and there will also be dedicated footpaths – so no sharing with slow pedestrians walking three abreast with Ipods in their ears…

Because of that, we are confident that the cycleway will attract cyclists ranging from the family out on their first bike trip for years to the morning commuter wanting to move fast.

The plan storyboards (9 pages) that were shown at recent events give you an idea of the other things that are to happen in the area, so you can give feedback to Auckland Council (email: PlanPakuranga@aucklandcouncil.govt.nz) before the formal submissions happen later this year. Feedback needs to be in by THURSDAY THIS WEEK.

Some of the things CAA will submit on (and which you may also want to raise) will be:

  • Emphasise that the northernmost part of Ti Rakau Drive, through the town centre, also needs an off-road cycleway – to link into the cycleway planned along Ti Rakau Drive to Botany itself (this may well happen, but is not confirmed yet – some concepts discussed funneling cyclists through a plaza area for a short stretch, which would obviously be less ideal for the commuter type cyclist).
  • Emphasise that Pakuranga Road east of the town centre also needs cycle facilities (it isn’t clear from the plans at this stage whether that will happen – there will be a lot of pressure from car traffic to keep lots of traffic lanes onto that dubious new fly-over ramp)
  • Apparently, the plans may include a car parking building somewhere near the town centre, for many millions of dollars. We are just building two busways and cycleways to get to this town centre. Do we really want another massive expense for car parking? No.
  • We support improved “green and inviting connections” (why not call them Greenways?) for cyclists / pedestrians to the Rotary Path and other areas around the town centre.
  • We support some roads being closed and turned into cul-de-sacs as part of the project – as long as walking and cycling is still retained wherever possible.

Remember that the above bullets are issues that we don’t like / are a bit worried about, and thus will highlight for them to hopefully re-think. Overall, we are quite happy with most of the project, especially to see that dedicated, really high-quality cycleways are included in these designs – cycleways that serve all types of cyclists, and go where people want to go, rather than end up shifted somewhere else. That is well worth supporting, and we hope your feedback agrees that this is a great project for cycling.

If the paper form is too cumbersome (we think so – who prints and mails stuff by post anymore?), you can also directly email your comments to their email address.

Categories
AMETI Auckland Transport East Auckland General News Infrastructure Key Projects Off-road paths Regional Auckland Cycle Network South Auckland
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9 responses to “Calling all Pakurangians – ignore the busway plans!

  1. Wow that is a fantastic development.

    I am a firm believer that once Aucklanders see what separated cycle paths can deliver in terms of a quality, safe cycling experience, there will be a big drive to have more of it.

    If we could get more people undertaking trips of less than 5kms on these paths, especially on their way to link with public transport, that would open up a whole new world for Auckland.

    Well done CAA!

    1. Admittedly, the project team were already leaning in that direction. We mainly did cheerleading, and some advising as to the best way to go forward!

      1. As a former Panmure resident, who used to go to Pakuranga quite a bit, the only real thing I can think of that stands out is the crossing of Pakuranga Hwy. With that many lanes and the amount of traffic, is there an opportunity to provide a grade separated crossing to the mall side? It’s a big job already and I think it should be looked at. I’ll send it in a submission.

    2. This looks awesome.

      I agree, seeing this in Auckland will transform many people’s perceptions.. and raise their expectations for other routes. All good.

      I think cycling *west* of Panmure needs attention. Though the plans work well for getting to Panmure station.. hopefully there will be plenty of high quality (covered) secure bike parking there!

      1. Hi Tim – CAA is aware of cycle lanes / shared paths going only as far west along Ellerslie-Panmure Highway as the current project will go – i.e. from Panmure to the intersection of Mt Wellington Highway. This means about 500m further west. Step by step, I guess.

        You will also have cycle lanes and shared paths south along the new AMETI Road and Mt Wellington Highway (both cycle lanes and shared paths on AMETI Road, shared paths on Mt Wellington Highway, but on both sides). These go as far south as 2/3rds of the way to Penrose Road (again, that’s where the project stops). Northwards from Panmure, there will be cycle lanes AND shared path to the intersection with Fraser / Morrins and then cycle lanes further north as far north as Tainui Road / Morrins Road intersection.

        So there will be some further connections going in around Panmure. There are also some schemes for better cycle facilities north of Panmure to and through the residential areas and towards Glen Innes. Will be a bit of a mixture of facilities, but some good steps nonetheless.

        1. Yes, north / south from Panmure could also be quite good not too bad with the new road and segregated cycle lanes. west by 500 m is better than nothing.. one slice at a time is a good strategy, especially if the slices include pinch points and crossings. At least until Goosoid puts it, there is a “big drive” to do more..

          Do we have an idea how many more high profile, high quality cycle way projects like Beach Road, Pakuranga Highway it would take to reach such a ‘tipping point’? What’s the next-on list look like that we should be agitating about?

          1. Hi Tim – watch this space over the next weeks. We have hooked up with Auckland Transport Blog and Generation Zero to produce a joint add-on to their “Congestion Free Network” to highlight the key moves we feel should happen for cycling.

  2. Electric bikes will be the large driver of getting the middleaged on a bike to do their shopping as well as just riding for pleasure . What stopping a lot of potential riders is fear of the fast traffic that surges past when you are just quitly going along at 10kmh . The ebike is realy a bicycle that allows you to be young and fit again and allows you to ignore the hills that make cycling difficult

    1. With you all the way there Rob. I have an electric bike and it is fantastic. The best way I have to describe it is that it is the same effort as walking but you are travelling 5-6 times as fast.

      I agree that especially for older people they could really be a game changer. But also if people are concerned by hills, an ebike really takes away hills as a factor.

      Apparently last year in China more ebikes were sold than cars.

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