Auckland Council’s Long Term Plan (10-Year Budget) for 2024 – 2034 is up for consultation, and it’s a big read! We’ve identified the bits of their proposal that relate to making it easier to get from A to B by bike, for you to keep in mind when you do your own submission. If you want to give their proposed Plan a read, you can find it here.

If you’re low on time or brain-power, skip to the Questions section below, where the submission guide officially begins. Otherwise, read on for some context!

If you’re in even more of a rush, jump straight in to submitting!

Make your submission now!

Have your say by 11.59pm on Thursday 28 March.

What is the Long Term Plan? 

The Long Term Plan is your opportunity to let Auckland Council know what you want them to invest in over the next 10 years. It’s a hefty document that helps plan for the future, guides investment in infrastructure and services, and in turn determines how much rates will cost over time. It feeds into and guides the Annual Plan, which is the 1 year budget (you may have given feedback on this last year).

Every 3 years the Long Term Plan is revisited and revised. This is a key time to show support for more funding towards safer streets, and a completed network for walking, cycling, and wheeling. Especially because the Long Term Plan will affect how funding will be allocated to different transport modes for the Regional Land Transport Plan (which is another super important document that will be up for consultation soon – sorry!).

The Context

Unfortunately, we’re broke! Decades of neglecting maintenance and long-term planning mean that trying to do stuff now is way more expensive than it needs to be. Between the high cost of upkeep from the barely-controlled suburban sprawl, our almost non-existent flood management infrastructure, and a lack of diversified wealth that the Council could leverage in times of need, something has got to change. To make matters worse, the Regional Fuel Tax (which funded a bunch of infrastructure projects) was scrapped by Central government without providing a replacement income source.

So it’s the perfect time for Auckland Council to make investment decisions which are well-evidenced to deliver bang for buck and reduce overall costs further down the line – such as investing more in walking, cycling, and wheeling (better late than never? … Right??).  Walking, cycling, and wheeling consistently prove to be extremely good investments for cities; being great for health and wellbeing, great for Papatūānuku (Earth), great for our wallets, cheaper to build and maintain infrastructure for, they make for much safer streets  – the list goes on. 

Alas, you guessed it, although Auckland Council say all the right buzzwords, it looks like what they say they want and what they’re willing to put in their budget are two very different things. The Central Proposal (which is positioned as if to be ‘business as usual’) in this budget cuts back funding for cycling infrastructure and raised pedestrian crossings, and hints at cutting back funding for other walking stuff in general as well. This is perplexing! The Spinoff has a great summary of the different options here.

In this Budget document, Auckland Council says that some of their main priorities are:

  • An Auckland that is beautiful, thriving, and safe, for all Aucklanders. 
  • To get back to basics.
  • To stop wasting money, and do things better, faster, cheaper. 
  • To focus on things that will have the most impact.
  • They’re worried about growth
  • They’re worried about climate change

And yet, with the budget as proposed, Auckland Council seems to have forgotten that walking and cycling stuff is absolutely crucial in achieving these aims. 

It’s up to us to remind them, in this consultation, that they can have these – and more! – for the low cost of investing in cycling.

Useful stuff and resources

You may be interested in what these other submission guides have to say, too:

Forest and Bird Surface Light Rail for Tāmaki Makaurau Auckland A list of guides from Greater Auckland

An example of Auckland Council “overspending” on walking and cycling infrastructure.


Here’s a quick guide of things that relate to bikes and cycling – the rest is up to you! Anything that requires you to write out a response, please try to do so in your own words, and with your own perspective. This is a guide, not a copy club!

Note: the feedback form has specific sections for ‘Transport’, the ‘North Harbour Stadium’, ‘Major investments’, ‘Port land’, ‘Changes to other rates, fees, and charges’ and ‘Local Boards’. Comments about any spending which isn’t related to those sections will need to go into the comment boxes in Section 1. Transport is Section 2. There is also an opportunity to talk about what matters to you with specific regards to your local board area in Section 7

1b. What would you like Auckland Council to do more or less of? (Select ‘Do less’, ‘As proposed’, or ‘Do more’)

Bike Auckland will be clicking Do More for the following areas:

  • Transport
  • City and Local Development
  • Parks and Community

The rest are up to you!

Find out more about the relevant cycling stuff in each of these categories here or skim over the full Long Term Plan for more information here.

1c. Is there anything else you would like Auckland Council to do more of that you would be prepared to pay more for?

Consider showing support for

  • Pumptracks, learn to ride tracks, bike skills courses, trails, and other recreational cycling facilities where people can safely grow their confidence on a bike
  • Eke Panuku’s redevelopment of town centres, which often includes making safe walking and cycling connections, as well as improving access for disabled people.
  • Improvements aligned with the Central Rail Link like the Karanga-a-hape station improvements project, which includes a protected cycleway along part of Pitt street, a pedestrian mall in Mercury Lane, and could include improvements for Canada Street
  • The Making Space for Water programme’s inclusion of “blue-green corridors”. These are walking and cycling paths through greenspaces and alongside streams, adding to our walking, cycling network while also creating a natural drainage area.
  • Auckland Climate Grants and the Live Lightly Programme which can fund community-led programmes to empower people to ride bikes for transport
  • More investment for local boards: enabling them to better deliver on local climate action plans and local transport priorities

1d. Is there anything else you would like Auckland Council to do less of so that you could pay less

Include your thoughts

2. What do you think of the transport proposal?

It’s good to see public transport getting a teensy bit of love, but it massively under-spends on cycling. The stated goals of the budget are to do things “better, faster, cheaper”, and “get back to basics”, and “make the most of what we have”. What could achieve these things better than making it safe, accessible, and convenient to cycle for transport? The return on investment is always positive, and only gets better and better as the network grows. 

Bike Auckland will be clicking: Support most of the proposal

Tell us why:
Include your own thoughts. You could mention:

  • Wanting increased investment in cycling infrastructure and maintenance. Investing in cycling has benefit-cost ratios of anywhere from 10:1 up to 25:1
  • Support for more raised pedestrian crossings and increased maintenance of our footpaths
  • Support for “Dig Once”: aligning delivery of transport projects with delivery of other infrastructure such as water improvements, to reduce costs and disruption overall. 
  • That Auckland Transport could leverage road renewals and maintenance for quick fixes that make streets safer for walking and cycling every time a road is repaved, repaired or repainted.
  • Support for multi-modal trips: such as the proposed $50 weekly cap for public transport, bikes on buses, more investment in train services, and whether or not you support light rail
  • Let Auckland Council know you want them to advocate to Central Government and Waka Kotahi for a lane on the existing Harbour Bridge to be reallocated for walking, cycling, and wheeling.
  • The UN for Environment recommends 20% of our transport budgets are towards walking and cycling but Auckland Transport typically allocates under 1% of our transport budget on cycling – note how we are massively underinvesting!
  •  Auckland Council’s commitment to the Transport Emissions Reduction Pathway, and Te Tāruke-ā-Tāwhiri, Auckland’s Climate Plan.

2a. Is there anything you would spend more on?

Include your own thoughts. You could mention:

  • Cycleways! Safe cycle infrastructure, accessible for all kinds of bikes, that get people where they want to go. More end-of-ride facilities for all kinds of bikes, more repair stations along key routes, and better, more regular maintenance of pathways throughout the city. The sooner this stuff is in the ground, the better off our city will be.
  • A safe, connected cycle network can be delivered fast and affordably by reallocating road space and using pop up protection like concrete or rubber separators
  • More safer speeds (30km/hr) for residential areas, around schools, and through town centres, with traffic calming and raised pedestrian crossings so that everyone can get to where they are going safely
  • Low traffic neighbourhoods or using modal filters (stuff like planter boxes and bollards which prevent cars coming through into a neighbourhood from a main road, but allow for bikes and pedestrians) as a fast and affordable way to make safer streets and empower people to walk, cycle and wheel for their trips
  • Note your support for any particular projects you would like to see delivered, such as (but not limited to): Lake road improvements, Manurewa and Māngere Transport Choices, the Henderson Cycleway, Lincoln Road Corridor Upgrade, Great North Road Improvements or the Upper Symonds & New North Road Upgrade Project.

2b. Is there anything you would spend less on?

Include your own thoughts here. You could mention:

  • Whether or not you support Auckland Council investigating the potential for a dedicated bike ferry across Te Waitematā between CBD and the North Shore.
    Bike Auckland hasn’t advocated for a dedicated bike ferry because it would be nowhere near as efficient, available, or affordable as providing a dedicated lane for walking, cycling, and wheeling across the existing Harbour Bridge. A bike ferry would be just as vulnerable to staffing shortages and capacity issues as any other public transport, likewise limited to fixed hours, and charge passengers for their travel. A 24/7 lane on the bridge gives people the freedom to make their own reliable journeys, free of traffic, and independent of public transport constraints.
    That’s what we reckon – but you do you.
  • Spend less on road widening for projects, and instead reallocate road space for delivery of walking, cycling, and public transport networks, creating an overall more efficient, affordable, and climate conscious transport network

For sections 3 – 6, you do you.

6a. What do you think of these proposals? (Select ‘Support’, ‘Do not support’, ‘Other’, or ‘I don’t know’)

Bike Auckland will be clicking ‘support’ on these items:

  • Broaden the description of bus services funded by the Climate Action Transport Targeted Rate to reduce the need to consult each year for minor changes to the bus programme (any changes to the settings of the rate would still require consultation). 

7. Local Boards

Depending on your Local Board area, you may have options related to cycling and cycle infrastructure. 

  • Franklin Local Board: Introduce the Franklin Local Board Paths Targeted Rate of $52 per ‘Separately Used or Inhabited Part’ to provide increased investment in paths in the Franklin Local Board area.
  • Specifically mention any particular infrastructure projects which you want to see your local board support for your area.

And that’s all we’ve got! That’s everything that we thought was relevant to the bike community specifically. Thanks for giving democracy a go!

Make your submission now!

Have your say by 11.59pm on Thursday 28 March.

Keep pedaling on!

Bike Auckland

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Bike Auckland is the non-profit organisation working to improve things for people on bikes. We’re a people-powered movement for a better region. We speak up for you – and the more of us there are, the stronger our voice!

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