Yes, Ministers! Meet NZ’s new transport team

Yes, Ministers! Meet NZ's new transport teamThe ministerial portfolios were announced today – and, in charge of transport for the next term will be Phil Twyford (Labour MP for Te Atatu), Julie Anne Genter (Greens) as Associate Transport Minister, and Shane Jones (NZ First) as Associate Transport inside cabinet. Because a picture’s worth a thousand words, here are a couple of really eloquent pictures. We love it that at least 2/3 of our new transport team – maybe all of them – are super bike-savvy. And we love it that all three coalition parties are represented, given the significant overlaps in their visions for safer streets and more all-ages options for getting around. Of course, it’s not just …
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We Voted Bike – and won a strong tail wind!

We Voted Bike – and won a strong tail wind!It’s official: the new government will be Labour-led with support from NZ First and backup from the Greens. And the policy overlaps of the coalition promise some big wins for a more bikeable Auckland, like… renewing the Urban Cycleways Programme investing in safe neighbourhood routes, especially to schools. (This was already Green Party policy; Bike Auckland actively encouraged Labour to embrace the idea as well, and we’re very glad they did!) adopting a Vision Zero approach to road safety, which puts people first support and dedicated funding for Skypath! It’s no coincidence that these are exactly the issues you helped us highlight via our VoteBike campaign in the run-up to the election, by asking candidates and …
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Dutch scenes in a British context – lessons for New Zealand

Dutch scenes in a British context - lessons for New ZealandTake a look at these powerful images from the blog Alternative Department of Transport, created by transposing typical Dutch cyclists into a British street environment… which could just as easily be a New Zealand street environment. (The images were so popular, there was a follow-up post with more.) Straight away it becomes blindingly obvious why women, children and the elderly are so underrepresented among regular cyclists in NZ. It also demonstrates why most people put themselves in a majority group who would love to cycle more but don’t feel safe doing so. You will notice that all the British scenes are in nice flat areas – none of those nasty hills that apparently doom cycling …
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Submit on SkyPath – key issues guide coming in January

Earlier this month the Resource Consent for SkyPath was fully publicly notified – meaning that anyone can make a submission on the project before 23 January. This is a big project for Auckland and we encourage you to take the time to make a personal submission. It’s important to let the Commissioners know that Aucklanders understand and support the benefits of this critical and long-awaited link for the Auckland cycling network. It’s easy to submit online – but remember that your submission must be focussed on the environmental and societal benefits and impacts outlined in the SkyPath application, rather than your general support. We know it’s a daunting task to …
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Commuting into the Auckland CBD from Onehunga

A post from CAA member Geoff. We always love to blog posts from members and you can remain anonymous if you prefer. It doesn’t matter what the post is about as long as it is vaguely cycling related. 500 words is all we ask for and maybe some nice photos. For the last four years I’ve been cycling to work on a daily basis and in this article I’ll share some of my experiences and thoughts on cycle commuting in Auckland. My commute is from Onehunga into the CBD and return – a round trip of about 30 km. I’m sure the audience of this blog understand the benefits of cycle …
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Have a merry SkyPath

SkyPath, the project to add a walk & cycleway to the Auckland Harbour Bridge, has come enormously far in the last couple years – even if much of that work, after the big protest in 2009, was “behind closed doors”. Convincing decisionmakers that it was required. Convincing authorities that it was feasible. Convincing a funder that it was a worthy investment. Now, the last big step has gone public – getting resource consent. Last Friday, SkyPath was publicly notified, giving all of Auckland the chance to have their say about this game-changing project, which will both be a crucial link for our city’s sustainable transport and an iconic feature that …
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SeaPath? NaturePath?

Our post on SkyPath’s Northern Connectors has generated a lot of comment and it’s great to see the support not just for SkyPath itself but endorsement of the need for multiple routes catering for many different user requirements. So let’s have a closer look at SeaPath – the generic name for the connector between SkyPath and southern Takapuna and the Devonport Peninsula marked in blue on the adjacent map.  As with any project, we’ll set out the requirements, then look at possible design alternatives, with a commentary on Forest & Bird’s NaturePath proposal. There are two types of cyclists who will be attracted to SeaPath.  Firstly, tourists, visitors and recreational cyclists, bearing in …
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Vote bike!

With just a week to go before we head to the polling booths, we thought it timely to update our Vote page with a summary of the cycling policies of our political parties.  Some of them are stand-out, while some are abysmal. Go have a look here on the  Vote Page, where we also explain why we ranked each party with a particular number of stars. The best outcome for cycling after 20 September would be in Labour/Green/Maori policies, with NZ First, Internet-Mana and United Future not averse to supporting increased funding. The worst outcome would arise from National/ACT/Conservative policies. In essence, it comes down to the centre-right promoting funding …
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Further update to- Govt adds new cycling money – a step change for New Zealand?

27th Aug – FURTHER UPDATE: We sincerely apologise to our readers and all those who knew better than our original blog as to the source of this funding. We need to place on record that, the Govt’s money is new crisp notes from the Consolidated Fund.  The Government has announced today that it will allocate $100m over the next 4 years for new urban cycleways. (Note : original ref to asset sales / GPS underspend is incorrect). The media release for the funding is introduced by this comment – ‘Mr Brownlee says National recognises that commuting by bike has health benefits and takes pressure off other transport networks, but says …
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Further update to- Govt adds new cycling money – a step change for New Zealand?

27th Aug – FURTHER UPDATE: We sincerely apologise to our readers and all those who knew better than our original blog as to the source of this funding. We need to place on record that, the Govt’s money is new crisp notes from the Consolidated Fund.  The Government has announced today that it will allocate $100m over the next 4 years for new urban cycleways. (Note : original ref to asset sales / GPS underspend is incorrect). The media release for the funding is introduced by this comment – ‘Mr Brownlee says National recognises that commuting by bike has health benefits and takes pressure off other transport networks, but says …
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Youth steps up for cycling in Waitemata

On Monday, 28 July the new Youth Council was sworn in at the Council chambers. The representative for the Waitemata Local Board is Isabella Lenihan-Ikin. She gave a great speech to the Council and Mayor Len Brown where she challenged them to step up to the challenge of providing cycling as a real transport option for Aucklanders. Her speech is below: Kia Ora Koutou Katoa. It is a privilege and honour to speak here this evening, as a member of the Youth Advisory Panel representing young people from Waitemata. Len Brown, I would firstly like to thank you for being a Mayor who is engaged with all facets of our city; …
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Cycle bridge: Level Copenhagen

Copenhagen has just completed its Bicycle Snake Bridge (Cykelslangen). It is an amazing piece of engineering and design which really adds to the beauty of what is already a very picturesque city. For me, being there gave me a sense of what Auckland could have been had the city taken a different approach to transport. It has a beautiful harbour and clean crisp air, not that common in Europe. What it doesnt have are huge motorways right through its heart. I was there in Summer, when the city is traditionally quiet, but the traffic was calm and often the only sound was the tinkling of bicycle bells. The Danish appeared annoyingly happy, healthy and attractive living …
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Want more cycling $$ from the Government ? Click here now!

A big cycle campaign is underway now. It’s led by Cycle Action – Generation Zero – Spokes Dunedin- Cycle Aware Wellington and heaps of other groups who are working for safe cycling and better transport choice.  The campaign asks you to help us get more $$$ for cycling in the draft Government Policy Statement for transport, which is open now for public feedback. Investing more money in connected complete cycling routes is the fastest way to improve cycling safety across Auckland and other NZ cities and towns. The Government will soon complete Auckland’s motorway network, and in the next decade will be going gang  busters to spread motorway tentacles to the …
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Fantastic energy for Harbour pathway project- Whau River Boardwalk

Last Friday I represented Cycle Action at the launch of this hugely inspirational project for a 13km walking and cycling route connecting the Manukau and Waitemata Harbours. I was blown away by the prospect of a north-south connector linking the Te Atatu Peninsula, the NW Cycleway, a necklace of foreshore reserves on the Whau River, Portage Rd and Green Bay on the Manukau. The Herald is reporting on the project today.  Here’s some of the highlights from Wayne Thompson’s story – “As well as a draw for visitors, the 13km Whau project would restore the river’s nature, link existing parks, reserves, greenways and neighbourhoods and give public access to the …
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The future is a car free city?

Living in such a car centric city, it can be hard to see how it could operate any other way. Even in a more public transport friendly country like the UK, a vision for a city with less cars can be one that is difficult to imagine. This article raises some interesting points and sets out some visions for what a less car dependent or even car-free city would look like. Of course, cycling must be a part of any low car city and its great relationship with public transport only reinforces that.
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