Upper Harbour Drive – cycle the lane, or blaze a path?

Location map of Upper Harbour DriveAuckland Transport has just announced concept designs for cycle facilities on Upper Harbour Drive in North Shore – linking the Greenhithe Bridge cycleway through to the Albany Highway.

They are considering a variety of potential ways to add cycle facilities – from slightly upgraded “paint-only” cycle lanes to a variety of designs with shared paths (AT will also construct a continous footpath at least on one side).

  1. Cycle Lane – with buffer space from fast traffic – on both sides; footpath on one side;
  2. Cycle lane – wider, but no buffer – and footpath on both sides;
  3. Shared use path on one side; cycle lane on other side
  4. Shared use path on both sides; and
  5. Shared use path on one side; cycle lane on both sides.
Option 1
Option 1

The five options and their widths can be seen in the first link above. At right, we are showing just Option 1, and Option 5.

Option 1 is AT’s preferred solution and its not a bad one. It will improve safety for existing users, encourage a few more cyclists to give cycling a go, and has a reasonable footpath.

Option 5
Option 5

However, Option 5 is the one that CAA thinks would work best, as it caters well for the current cyclists using the road, yet also provides, via the shared path, a great facility for people who remain cautious about cycling on a higher-speed road. It costs more though.

A buffer of an extra 50 cm is nice, but will people let their children ride there? That’s the acid test. And too much of Auckland’s cycle network still fails that, even if things are getting a lot better on new projects.

Auckland Transport is asking for feedback on the design, and we think people should write in and support Option 5 – or, if you and AT both feel that’s not the way to go, then ask that they should do Option 1, but with the buffer upgraded to a physical barrier of some shape. Maybe Triangle-Road style separators, without the flexi-posts?

Please provide online feedback to AT and support either Option 5, or Option 1 with added physical separation!

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