Huge turn out of pedal power puts pressure on Government to take action

Thank you to all the people who turned up at Queen’s Wharf on Sunday for the Bikes for Life rally.  The rally organisers were humbled by the presence of Roger Wolfe (husband of Kay Wolfe, the cyclist killed outside of Morrinsville while training for the Lake Taupo Cycle Challenge) and his 16-year-old daughter Kelly.

The rally was an opportunity for Cycle Action and Bike NZ to jointly request that the Government take the issue of road safety seriously with three key demands for action.  There is real concern that under the current direction, people who choose to cycle will continue to feel vulnerable or may even turn away from using a bicycle for transport. Cycling is known to be a common ingredient in the transport mix of every city that puts people first.  Auckland Mayor Len Brown understands that a ‘civillised city is a cyclised city’. You can read Len’s message to the rally that was read out by Cr Mike Lee here.

The new Auckland Council seems genuinely keen to take the interests of cycling seriously.  This is very refreshing and long overdue. As a result of the rally, cycling is well and truly on the Government’s agenda as well.

The focus is now on central government.  It is well understood that a good transport system is an integrated one.  The current transport mix in New Zealand is imbalanced with the bulk of investment going into roads.  Cycling will benefit when this anomaly is rectified.  That is what is required to make our Auckland and New Zealand a place that is attractive and livable.  Rod Oram is leading the way on this issue.  You can find out what he has to say here and here.

Mark Bracey, Chair Cycle Action

You can see coverage of the rally here (NZ Herald), here (TVNZ) and here (TVNZ). You can also see more photos of the rally on Facebook here.

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