The clock is ticking on Auckland Transport’s consultation on how to make the suburbs from Pt Chev to the city more bike-friendly. Feedback is due by the end of Tuesday 5 April [deadline extended], so consider this your urgent reminder to take the opportunity to speak up for a truly bikeable back yard.
And if our words don’t convince you, maybe the gorgeous images from our mates at Generation Zero will!
AT is looking to you to help work out the priorities for this area for the next ten years. They want to know:
- where you currently ride,
- where you’d like to ride, if you could, and
- what needs fixing to make your bike travels possible.
They’re looking at both the big picture, and small wins. So yes, the city is forging ahead with large-scale bike routes for commuting and recreation, which means proper bike lanes along major streets…
… but also neighbourhood networks that let people of all ages ride safely to the dairy, the shops, to school, to dinner, to a friend’s place. So going by bike becomes a completely natural and obvious choice.
… and together, these improvements will make all of our streets quieter, friendlier, less congested and just generally nicer to live on, shop at, and travel through.
How to give feedback?
And you can use this nifty map app, which lets you drop a pin on the map to identify a problem or a possibility. The map lets you see what others have already pinpointed (and by all means, add your voice if you agree with them!). All feedback links are open till 5 April, but the sooner you add your feedback, the more other people can see where the issues and preferred routes are, and chime in too.
Don’t be shy: your thoughts count whether they’re small and local, or big and wide, whether you live in the area or visit or just travel through. Every single piece of feedback counts, and the more concrete and specific the better. Speak up – the next ten years is listening.
What sort of feedback is useful?
- routes you regularly ride, or would like to ride (not just you, but kids too – there are at least 16 schools in the area, not counting kindergartens and daycares)
- clever connections you use and like – alleyways, paths through parks, quiet and flat back streets
- missing links you wish were there
- danger zones that need fixing – pinch points, places where cars speed
- intersections that are unfriendly to people on bikes or on foot
- areas that could benefit from lowered speeds (especially around schools, shops, attractions)
- places that need more bike parking
- main streets where it makes sense to let pedestrians and cyclists keep walking, instead of pausing at every corner to check for turning cars
- great places that could have better access for bikes and pedestrians – parks, museums, sportsfields, beaches, Motat, the zoo, stadiums
- shopping streets and arterial roads that can and should have proper protected cycleways
What’s in the plans?
The official consultation map (below) offers the bones of a cycle network (in pale blue; the red lines show cycleways already built or under construction). This network will probably feature proper separated lanes along main roads and shopping streets – and quiet, traffic-calmed residential streets that help join the dots.
But beyond that, everything is wide open. Where else would you like to see made safer for bikes, and calmer for pedestrians, and just generally nicer to live and travel?
How would you like local streets to look and feel, to be safer for traveling on foot and on bike?
What locations and places are important to you, in thinking about the connections you’ll need?
It’s a big area to cover – Pt Chev, Westmere, Grey Lynn, West Lynn, Arch Hill, Ponsonby, Herne Bay, St Mary’s Bay, Freeman’s Bay – which is why AT needs your ideas to help work out what to prioritise.
Speak now, or forever hold your peace!
Hand-drawn images courtesy Generation Zero.