Our clever colleagues at Generation Zero have been watching the media closely for the past week, and decided to give the public a positive focus for cycling. It’s a petition to AT asking for action on AT’s official regional cycle network of safe cycling routes.
We’re grateful Gen Zero is backing our comments about AT’s lamentable delivery of safe cycling routes in Auckland. In turn, we’re helping spread the word on the petition campaign asking AT to step up its cycleway construction programme a few notches, so the public has real transport choice to cycle.
Gen Zero understands that cycling is not just a mode on its own. Cycling provides cheap, healthy, flexible and environmentally sound transport around our city. It also has potential to have a magic multiplier effect on public transport, by enabling quicker and easier access to ferries, trains and buses, and flexibility to their fixed public transport networks.
Auckland’s regional cycle network is designed to connect commercial centres, schools and tertiary facilities and provide access to public transport. When built it will provide approx 900 km of safe cycle routes. So far only 270 km (30%) are described by AT as complete. Anyone who has ridden these ‘complete’ routes knows they’re littered with ‘stop-start’ and substandard facilities, which Cycle Action has been bringing to AT’s attention for the past 2 years. (Take Kyber Pass Rd as an example)
AT’s website advises that ‘Auckland Transport in conjunction with Auckland Council and the New Zealand Transport Agency is working towards achieving the target in the Regional Land Transport Strategy 2010-2040 to build at least half of the regional cycle network by 2016 and to complete it by 2026.’ There’s another goal in the Auckland Plan to complete 70% of the regional cycle network by 2020, but let’s focus on what AT says on its website.
Generation Zero’s petition asks AT to face up to its integrated transport responsibilities by completing 50% of the regional cycle network by 2016. This has to include bringing substandard sections up to spec. and building new projects up to standard.
Yes, its a big jump and wake up call for AT. But no one could argue that this is not an essential part of Auckland’s liveable city grand plan. The first term of the Supercity focused on electric trains, the CRL and a smart bus network. Great – we love it. This term has to include fronting up on cycling – Generation Zero has provided the focus.
Please link to the petition here, sign on then send it wildly viral so it gains spectacular support. If Lorde can take on the world and win, surely Aucklanders can take on Auckland Transport to keep its commitment to safe cycle routes. Let’s get to it!