Wellington Scoop

Help wanted to plan safer cycling connections in Newtown and Berhampore

News from Wellington City Council
People who live or regularly travel in Newtown, Berhampore and Mt Cook are being asked to share their thoughts and local knowledge as planning gets under way to develop safer bike connections in the area.

From today, anyone with an interest in the area can provide information about how they get around, and highlight things or areas they think need special consideration.

This initial feedback phase, which closes on 17 July, will be the first of three opportunities the community will have over the next 9 to 12 months to help shape changes in their neighbourhood.

Councillor Sarah Free, Wellington City Council’s Portfolio Leader for Walking, Cycling and Public Transport, says the Council is taking a fresh look at all the possibilities, and will use information gathered over the next six weeks to help come up with options for consideration later in the year.

“It’s just the start of the conversation. At this stage there are no preferred routes or options on the table,” she says. “The project is likely to include some improvements for people on foot, and other changes. So no matter how people travel – we want their thoughts.”

“Along with feedback we receive over the next few weeks, we will be reviewing and considering earlier work, including the 2014 Citizens’ Advisory Panel recommendations, views expressed as part of Our Town Newtown project, and feedback provided at St Anne’s Hall last year.

We want to hear from as many people as possible, including children who live or go to school in this area,” Cr Free says.

The Newtown Connections project is part of the Council’s plan to gradually develop a citywide cycle network in partnership with the community, NZ Transport Agency and Government. The aim is to provide improved facilities that will make it possible for more people of all ages and abilities to choose to make some trips by bike.

The project will include looking at how best to improve some neighbourhood routes and connections to key local destinations, including Wellington Regional Hospital, and safer links to the city and adjoining suburbs.

It will take into account any plans for this area that are announced through the Let’s Get Wellington Moving project as well as planned bus network changes, which are due to come into effect soon.

Cr Free says to help manage congestion as the city’s population grows, and make sure roads can cope with the numbers who need or want to drive, it is important to make changes which will allow as many people as possible to be walking, biking or taking public transport.

The easiest way to provide feedback is online at transportprojects.org.nz. Facilities and assistance are available at Kia Ora Newtown, 8 Constable Street. People can also pick up paper feedback forms from here, or phone 04 499 4444 or email transport@wcc.govt.nz to request one.

Council staff will be meeting with a range of groups and organisations in the area over coming weeks to help encourage a diverse range of people to get involved.

There will also be opportunities for people to drop-by and talk. These include:

• Saturday 16 June, 1pm–3pm, pop-up shop, 199 Riddiford Street next to the mall
• Thursday 21 June, 5.30pm–7.30pm, Newtown Community and Cultural Centre theatre, 7 Colombo Street
• Saturday 30 June, 1pm–3pm, pop-up shop, 199 Riddiford Street
• Thursday 5 July, 4pm–6pm, pop-up shop, 199 Riddiford Street

Content Sourced from scoop.co.nz
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  1. greenwelly, 6. June 2018, 10:04

    So how is different to what happened 4 years ago ( to the month) and why will this result in anything happening when last time nothing occurred. What happened to the result of the 2014 consultation? Has it been binned? (given that the council appears to be disowning it). Even the language is identical.

    2014: “There is no preferred or obvious best way to make cycling in this area safer and more appealing but various possibilities are being explored, which all have different pros and cons.”

    2018: ““It’s just the start of the conversation. At this stage there are no preferred routes or options on the table.”

  2. KB, 6. June 2018, 10:06

    Wellington has a woeful lack of bike sharing schemes , where you can pick up and drop off a bike for your commute (for a small fee, often cheaper than a bus or rail fare) – and not have to worry about your own bike being stolen, or having to take the same mode of transport in both directions.

    Not to mention a woeful lack of bike routes – only a madman would attempt to cycle on Wellington roads where car drivers are unaccustomed to dealing with cyclists (not helped by the fact there is no space usually for cars to safely pass a cyclist) – particularly the crazy situation where the cycle route from Wellington to the Hutt is on an extremely busy 100km motorway. A proper, seperate, wide dedicated cycleway between the Hutt and Wellington would likely remove thousands of car trips from that route (an ebike would likely be faster than a car during rush hour – but currently impractical to use an ebike anywhere near its 40km top speed as the cycle route is too narrow to safely pass regular bikes etc).

    There is another obvious solution to creating plentiful bike lanes around the central city and main routes into it, easily and for little cost – but no one dares mention it because it requires the ultimate sacrifice in New Zealand (on-street car parks).

  3. ND, 7. June 2018, 8:22

    I must be mad then because I’ve been cycling on NZ roads for thirty years with only three minor accidents. I don’t need any more badly designed bike lanes or shared bicycles strewn over the pavements like Sydney and many Chinese cities. The only problems are increasing population and rising tourism which are adding more trucks and cars, often poorly driven, to our roads. Control population growth and tourism and so limit most of our other problems too.

  4. luke, 7. June 2018, 11:03

    a safer cycling route between the Hutt & Wellington really just requires the re prioritization of 800m hard shoulder to seggregated cycleway.

  5. Barbara S, 7. June 2018, 12:12

    I agree with all those comments ND. I hope the right people take note.

  6. Dave B, 7. June 2018, 13:39

    @ KB, agreed – on-street parking is a major hazard for cyclists, unless the road is wide enough to allow cyclists to ride clear of potential flung-open doors while still being out of the main traffic flow. Many Wellington streets are not wide enough for this.

    Narrow main roads such as Wallace Street and the upper part of Adelaide Road which are less than 10m from kerb-to-kerb have their effective width virtually halved by parking on both sides. Cyclists have no option but to claim the traffic lane and potentially hold up the flow. It is not their choice that 50% of the road-width is given over to parking. Remove this and the problem disappears. Cyclists can ride next to the kerb and moving traffic will have much more room than it does now. More room for everyone in fact.

    So where should residents and visitors park their cars (on streets that were in place prior to the motor-era and never designed to accommodate parking)? I don’t know the answer, but what we currently allow is a messy, hazardous compromise and certainly not the fault of cyclists.