‘The Good Bunch’ Changing Minds on Tamaki Drive

A quiet revolution is underway on Tamaki Drive – fuelled by goodwill and understanding. Sorry to sound like a ‘born again’ rave, but this is about changing hearts and minds. It was started by Mark Taylor, owner of Mt Eden Cycles. He’s an unlikely saviour, but we may see him as one when we look back in a few years. In June last year he was leading large groups of 100 or more cyclists on early morning bunch rides along Tamaki Drive. He knew random cyclists joined to draft along in the wake of his bunches, so could never be sure how big the bunches were – or how safe. Mark contacted Cycle Action to ask if we could help him make bunch riding practices safer and more engaged with other road users – starting with his own groups.

Flash forward to April 2012. – After 9 months of collaboration between Auckland Transport, Auckland Police, CAN & BikeNZ, Central Auckland bike shop owners and Cycle Action a new initiative for Tamaki Drive is launched called ‘The Good Bunch’ – a voluntary riding protocol. The key features are listed on a small card, shown here, and available from Cycle Action Auckland and participating bike shops, including Mt. Eden Cycles

More work is underway. The Orakei Local Board has appointed a representative to work with our Tamaki Drive working group, as the road is mostly in the Board’s area. We are now collaborating with Auckland Transport and Bike NZ on a new Rde Leader Training programme to spread the word on safer, consistent riding practices.

The Good Bunch’s bottom line is that we are all safer (road, commuter, everyday and recreation cyclists) when our riding is predictable and considerate to other road users. And before I am hit by a howl of indignation -“What about motorists?” – Rest assured, work is also being done with AA to engage with motorists. We’ll update you on that as we progress. Meanwhile, email me if you want to know more, or can help spread the word across the cycling community- cuthash@worldnet.co.nz

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