Buried in the details of this announcement of the next AMETI Open Day on 15 September 2012, we have a long-awaited confirmation that CAA was only able to hint at so far:

AMETI now proposes a walk- and cycleway along Lagoon Drive*, directly connecting the Panmure Town Centre with the planned walking/cycling Panmure bridge, and from there, the future off-road path to Pakuranga Town Centre!

* In addition to the more recreational walking path that already exists on the lagoon side of the road.

As you can see in the sketch at the right (click through twice for larger view), the now-proposed link (green) will be more direct than the previously proposed deviation (dark blue) along routes via Church Crescent / Queens Road. Both of which would have been on-road – with no certainty of getting even painted cycle lanes – and which would have involved travelling through a rather hairy roundabout at Queens Road / Kings Road. By providing an off-road route (on the northern side of Lagoon Drive, next to the new busway), we make the route attractive to a whole new type of locals who want to ride bikes.

CAA had been able to comment to AT on their proposals for this path a while back, but knowing the costs involved in providing it, we didn’t want to celebrate too soon. But obviously, AT higher-ups have agreed with their own team that it makes sense to provide a high-quality link all the way, if you are going to the trouble of upgrading Panmure Bridge and the section east of it so significantly for cyclists. Great to hear, and we hope everyone who lives or cycles in the area registers their support (at the Open Day, or at future opportunities for comment).

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5 responses to “Lagoon Drive shared path confirmed & AMETI Open Day

  1. I’m in favour of a path along Lagoon Drive as it has some redeeming features and is a nice-to-have, but is it really better than an on-road route along Queens and Church?

    Parts of Lagoon Drive provide some nice views for recreational riding and it is arguably more direct (by all of 185 metres) for anyone avoiding Panmure — which can be an entirely valid need — but it hardly services the town centre or suburb well.

    Most of the frontage on Lagoon Drive is actually ugly backyards set back behind off-street car parking lots, some driveways to ~20 residences, or shoreline. Indeed, putting a cycle path through there should risk no more than about a half dozen car parks, if any, so I can see why it might be so tempting for AT. Onwards and downwards, eh?

    [Addition by website editor: Wrong. All the easy space is already taken by the new busway. Therefore, adding the shared path is a significant extra cost]

    On the other hand, accommodating cyclists on Queens Road would be a lot more useful, since there are shopfronts right up to the footpath in the town centre area — including at least one cycling shop! It would be an ideal place to eventually redevelop as a people-friendly space, starting with lower speed limits and proper cycle lanes integrating with public transport nodes (and if we’re really ambitious, shared spaces too).

    The section along Church Road would have directly touched at least twice as many residences as on Lagoon Drive, and a school. It would also indirectly network with all the other streets in that area like Sunset View Road, the rest of Queens Road, and beyond.

    AMETI Phase 2 would have been the perfect time to replace the hairy roundabout at the western end of Queens Road, as the infamous one at the eastern end is already on the chopping block.

    But I’m sure you know all this and agree with taking a wider approach to cycling issues. So where’s the tough love for AT? I feel short-changed by this token gesture, and CAA doesn’t speak for me as a cyclist in unreservedly praising them for it.

    If you believe the danger is that AT would have done a bad job of providing on-road cycle lanes, I for one would rather you made that the issue here and advocated a better level of service for people using bicycles.

    1. So by embracing the once-in-a-century chance of including a CONTINOUS cycle path along the whole of the busway – instead of a stop-start, here-now, gone-there facility – we are once again branded by you as lacking of vision, cowardly even. And – of course – not speaking for you.

      Doesn’t faze me much, really.

      1. A continuous cycle path is a fine thing, but it matters just where it is, where it goes and what it connects. Tobler’s first law of geography still applies. Lagoon Drive remains pretty bad compared to Queens/Church.

        Why the false dichotomy between a continuous off-street path and a discontinuous on-street path? Exactly why is a high-quality, continuous on-street path impossible? Did you advocate for it?

    2. And for anyone else wondering about non-motorist’s comments, CAA has been involved for years in the Panmure & Pakuranga areas, advocating for better cycling conditions and routes. We have worked directly with, for example, the Panmure-side Local Board, which has praised us for our engagement.

      Obviously, all that is made worthless because we support the off-road facilities along the busway. Hah. Not. Proud of it. And proud of the Opus / AT team doing the busway corridor design there. You rock, guys & gals.

    3. (I see “website editor” has taken to editing my posts instead of replying.)

      Website editor,

      I’m not sure what you mean by “easy space” here, but it can’t be in reference to car parking spots. There simply are not many car parks exposed to AMETI in that stretch. I see ~6 recessed spots outside the squash club on the relevant northern side, and ~10 on the southern shore side (which I fail to see the proposed cycleway affecting). Are you saying that additional land along the corridor had to be acquired specifically to accommodate the cycleway, or something like that?

      To be honest, I can still see that being the easier way out for AT, given that removing car parks is often worse than pulling teeth. Both NZTA and AT seem to have no qualms in throwing millions of dollars nominally for cycling, to avoid having to deal with that (see Grafton Gully).

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