Lost and found – a wayfinding fiasco

Lost and found – a wayfinding fiascoFor experienced navigators of the city, it can be hard to remember what it was like just starting out. We get used to figuring out how to get from A to B by following the breadcrumbs, or the ant trail of other people on bikes. Once you know the way, it can be almost impossible to return to what the Zen masters call ‘Beginner’s mind’. But with Auckland Transport reviewing its paper bike maps (and looking at map apps for the digitally enhanced among us), it’s ever more crucial to see things with fresh eyes. Enter Neil, a retired school teacher who regularly bikes around his Henderson neighbourhood for exercise. He contacted us the other day with the following good-humoured tale of …
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A completion party for a jolly good causeway

A completion party for a jolly good causewayTo celebrate the upgrade of the Northwestern cycleway along the Causeway – and to thank people for their epic patience over the four years (!) of the project – NZTA is throwing a wee party this weekend. They’ve chosen a great spot: the beautiful green grounds of Unitec, next to where the cycleway runs through (and also handy by foot and train and bus and any combo thereof). Whether you’re a regular weekday commuter or a weekend rider, swing by on Saturday between noon and 4pm to join the celebration. There’ll be a BBQ and family-friendly activities and of course, plenty of bike parking! There’s also car-parking too, in the Unitec grounds, if you’d like to park-and-ride. More …
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Un petit Tour de Waterview – come one, come all!

Un petit Tour de Waterview – come one, come all!Allons-y, which is French for ‘on your bike!’ A tiny, slow-paced Tour De France is coming to Waterview, on Saturday 15th October 2016 @ 10am. The ‘Tour de Waterview’ is the brainchild of the lovable Waterview Coffee Project, which operates out of a colourful container on Daventry St and is the caffeinated glue that holds the neighbourhood together. If you’re a local, you’ll be in like Flynn. If you’re not, come and visit this sweet little ‘hood keeping it real in the shadow of New Zealand’s biggest motorway project. Waterview is easily accessible via the NW cycleway – exit the cycleway at Great North Rd beside the overbridge onto the east/city …
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Great North Road / Bullock Track – a difficult, slow beast

Great North Road / Bullock Track - a difficult, slow beastUnsafe conditions on New Zealand roads are often left untreated for long periods, because we do not yet prioritise and fund road safety with Vision Zero-style dedication. But at some point – like when an intersection is officially listed as one of the “Top 10 Most Dangerous Intersections in New Zealand” and “Third worst in Auckland” – you have to hope that something will finally get done. That’s the case for the intersection of Great North Road / Bullock Track, west of Grey Lynn, which has a very long rap sheet: over fifty known crashes (including one fatality) over the last 10 years, among them one of our own close associates, who had a potentially very …
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Waterview and New Lynn paths hit snags, rock on!

Waterview and New Lynn paths hit snags, rock on!Some of you may have been wondering how the (ongoing) Waterview Shared Path construction is going. And we know that some of you have really started to worry about the New Lynn-Avondale-Waterview path, because things have been so quiet from the official side recently. Well, have no fear. There have been some temporary setbacks, but some good people are hard at work overcoming them (hopefully in time for the overall dates to not slip seriously). Waterview Shared Path On the Waterview Shared Path, the most visible works are at the Alford Street Bridge, crossing over to Unitec. These works are going along well – the Well-Connected Alliance (the same folks …
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Warm up with a westie winter bicycle adventure

Warm up with a westie winter bicycle adventureThe best way to celebrate new shared path connections is to go for a ride! And winter can be the nicest time to do it. On a beautiful crisp sunny Saturday in July, me and a couple of gal pals decided to make the most of it and head for a bit of an explore on some newly joined up off-road paths. We met up at the opening ceremony for the newly refurbished Pt Chevalier Square, which was absolutely delightful. The new park benches rotate and slide to create a delightful activation for the community. They also allow you to make the most of catching the summer sun (or shade) so I recommend you grab a …
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Bridging creeks, rails and motorway canyons – Waterview Shared Path moves along

Bridging creeks, rails and motorway canyons - Waterview Shared Path moves alongWe recently received an update from the people at the Waterview Alliance, the motorway and tunnel builders who are now also building the Waterview Shared Path. The great news is that work is coming along nicely, and we are now seeing progress on the three key bridges of the project – the Alford Street Bridge linking Waterview suburb with the Unitec Campus, the boardwalk between Phyllis Reserve and Harbutt Reserve, and the rail overbridge at Soljak Street. Here’s what the Alliance has to say on the progress: It’s so great to see construction under way – especially when like many of us, you have waited a long 5 years since the original Board of Inquiry …
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Running into trouble at the new Patiki Rd Underpass? Please tell us!

Running into trouble at the new Patiki Rd Underpass? Please tell us!Every silver lining has a cloud… and while the newly built stretches along the NW cycleway are a delight to ride, we’ve heard of at least 3 crashes at the Patiki Rd underpass since it opened in March. There will be a formal safety audit as soon as works are officially completed – but naturally we and NZTA are keen to find out what’s happening sooner, so the remedies can be applied as quickly as possible. Is speed a contributing factor in these incidents? Visibility? Camber? Approach? Was oncoming bike traffic an issue, or not? We don’t know – that’s why we need your help. Please read the following message from the NZTA, and contact Barbara Ware at the Causeway Alliance …
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Looking ahead – at Te Atatu South

Looking ahead - at Te Atatu SouthSome weeks back, some of our readers highlighted to us that the new section of the Northwestern Cycleway between Lincoln Road and Te Atatu South had a sightline issue around a powerline pylon. If someone was stopped on the path, or coming the other way cutting the corner, you might not be able to see them, due to a high board fence built around the base of the pylon. One of you even made a short video – thanks, Michael. Hold on to your handlebars, this is sped up strongly – watch out for the 4-5 second mark and stop the video: @biketeatatu here’s a video at more than 100kph …
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Diversion at Great North Road for Northwestern

Diversion at Great North Road for NorthwesternHello all NW Causeway riders – the Well-Connected Alliance is readying itself to do the final layout of the shared path around the corner of the Great North Road interchange, west of the GNR walk/cycle overbridge. To do this, they will need to detour cyclists onto a temporary path. But have no fear, you will only be “cutting the corner” for a few dozen metres, not being sent all the way to Avondale and back… The map below (this is our sketch, so excuse any differences to how it will look in the final layout) shows the temporary path that is planned. We went out on site with the construction team, …
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Goodbye ski-jump: a NW Cycleway shift along Chamberlain Park

Goodbye ski-jump: a NW Cycleway shift along Chamberlain ParkThe Chamberlain Park stretch of the NW cycleway is currently a bitsy ride, with narrow bits and visibility issues as works proceed towards completion. We strongly advise slowing down along here, especially at dusk when pedestrians become invisible and some bikes aren’t as well lit as they might be. But as of the coming week, we’ll be off this beaten path for three months and traveling at motorway level while workers create the new path alongside the golf course and add lighting duct work. The change-over will happen on Tuesday 26 April, after the morning peak hour around 9 or 10am, and will last until the end of July. Here’s what the contractors, CPB (formerly Leightons), told us: A …
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Bike to Jurassic (Chamberlain) Park!

Bike to Jurassic (Chamberlain) Park!Good news. Not only is the Albert-Eden Local Board looking at opening up Chamberlain Park for people to play in and walk and bike through (great news for those of us looking for better bike links) – they’re giving it a test-run this weekend. With bonus dinosaurs! The western end of Chamberlain Park will be open on Friday night for a free screening of Jurassic Park, and on Saturday for an Easter egg hunt, a concert, and a special event for dogs. With parking at a premium, the best way to get to the park is to ride your bike. There will be secure valet bike parking and a bike mechanic on …
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Easter Saturday in the Park – Chamberlain Park opens up

Easter Saturday in the Park – Chamberlain Park opens upYou already know about Bike to Jurassic Park on Good Friday. Here’s the other half of the fun on Easter Saturday. It’s a wonderful chance to peek inside a green space that’s usually only available to golfers, and find out about the Local Board’s plans, and what they’ll mean for people on bikes – as well as some upcoming improvements in the area. Here’s the details for Saturday 26th March: Gates will be open from 9 a.m. Parking available at Unitec and behind the Pt Chevalier shops, but the best way to arrive is by bike! There’s secure valet bike parking, and free bike checks by a bike mechanic. We’ll be …
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Happy trails – a cycleway in the backyard

Happy trails - a cycleway in the backyardOne recent afternoon on the NW cycleway, I bumped into a little girl and her dad. Well, I say ‘bumped into’ – but in fact wee Penny was powering along well ahead of her father, overtaken only by the occasional lycra dude. It was a treat to see someone so young riding with such confidence, so I had to find out more. Here’s her dad, Sam Tozer, with the scoop… Ever since Penny learned it was possible to bike from home (Kingsland) to school (Newton Primary, across the motorway via the Waima St bridge), she’s insisted on doing it pretty much every day. We also figured out we can use the cycleway plus Lightpath, to deliver her younger brother Tommy to his daycare in Freeman’s …
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St Lukes detour update – an end in sight

St Lukes detour update - an end in sightWe’ve been given an updated completion target for the NW cycleway detour at St Luke’s. The newly built section is now scheduled to reopen… wait for it… over Easter. Which is kind of symbolic. Thank you hugely for your patience during what has been (especially for commuters, school students, and those who rely on the path for local access) a long, roundabout, and occasionally bumpy process. Over the next 6-8 weeks, you may encounter traffic management along the cycleway and around the traffic islands on St Luke’s Rd as the final touches are put in place. Travel well (and not too fast), say gidday to the workers who are surely going as fast as they can …
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