Monday 03rd April

Coffee with Mayor Phil

Where: Ian McKinnon Drive/Upper Queen St
When: 7.00- 8.30

The clocks have gone back… which means we’ll all have a bit of time up our sleeves on Monday morning. Time for a pit stop – with free coffee, new maps, and a visit from the Mayor!

If you’re biking to the city from the west on Monday 3 April, Bike Auckland invites you to swing by our pit stop at the corner of Ian McKinnon Drive where it meets Upper Queen St. You know the place: top of the last hill on the way into the CBD, just before everyone peels off in different directions!

  • Our special guest Mayor Phil Goff will join us on his e-bike from around 7.15am, to see for himself the bike commute in action. You’re welcome to stop for a quick gidday.
  • And if you have time to linger, there’s free coffee for people on bikes – Bike Auckland’s treat! The lovely Gustavo Nervegna will be there with his sustainable Bow & Tie espresso-bike from 7.00 – 8.30am.
Gustavo and his Bow & Tie espresso bike. (Photo via Facebook)
Gustavo and his Bow & Tie espresso bike. (Photo via Facebook)
  • Plus, our mates from AT will be handing out their cute-as-a-button new city cycleway maps. The size of a credit card, they’re perfect to slip into your pocket. Best of all, they answer the golden question for people new to biking in the city: ‘How do I get to the pink path?’
TinyCyclewayMap
Adorable, and no bigger than a HOP card!
  • Which is great, because around 8.00 am, the Mayor and his entourage will ride along Lightpath, joining the regular flow of regular people on bikes entering the city for their working day!

Why here, why now?

By getting in amongst the bike commute, Mayor Phil will be joining the trend. Bike traffic into the city is on the up and up, and is dramatically booming along the new and newly connected paths.

Check out the numbers from AT’s counter at Kingsland, for example. Look at that rise! Bike trips have boomed by more than 25% from February 2016 to February 2017, with the completion of the causeway works, and improved city connections.

If this trend keeps up, it’s not hard to imagine monthly totals upwards of 40,000 trips in 3 or 4 years time.

NW Cycleway (Kingsland)_moving_averageFeb2017
Northwestern Cycleway rolling monthly average, as of February 2017.

But wait, you say, maybe that boost in numbers is just Aucklanders out for a weekend spin on their smooth and newly connected bike paths? Hey, good question.

So we broke the data down to daily averages for weekdays vs. weekend days, to work out where the biggest growth is.

Lo and behold. Yes indeed, the weekends are up, as the blue line shows. But check out the hot pink line rocketing skywards – the weekdays are definitely upper!

NW Cycleway Kingsland Cyclists weekday:weekend

That’s hundreds of happy riders every day heading to town for work and study – and correspondingly hundreds fewer cars squeezing onto the Northwestern motorway and through local streets, or onto buses and trains.

We expect to see the same uptake on the new eastern path from Glen Innes to Tamaki Drive, and on every new cycle network project that joins the dots (bring on Skypath!). It’s like turning on a tap – there is huge latent demand, which comes pouring through as soon as it’s safer to ride. On that note, as our busiest bike route to town, Tamaki Drive, continues to grow, with an average of 1500 trips a day –  it’s notable that most of the new riders opt for the (as yet unimproved) shared paths, which feel a lot safer than the roadway. And on the protected Quay St cycleway, a thousand riders a day now sail past the totem counter outside the Ferry Building, smashing the predicted target.

In other words, Aucklanders are voting with their pedals for safer routes to town, as they catch on to the unspoken other half of the daily traffic report: ‘There are delays on all motorways… but the cycleways are flowing freely.’

It’s plain to see what a massive productivity boost it is for each individual person who rides – and for our increasingly congested city as a whole – to have the option of safely biking to work from all directions.

So what are you waiting for? Join the crowd, and see us for coffee on Monday morning, with Mayor Phil at the top of the hill 🙂

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