Wellington Scoop

Cobham Drive roadworks – narrower lanes, reduced speed

Cobham Drive cycleway

Cobham Drive cycleway

News from WCC
Road users should take extra care heading east along Cobham Drive next week, as work on the new walking and bike paths will be happening closer to the road. The two airport-bound traffic lanes between the Troy and Calabar roundabouts will be a little narrower than usual, the road shoulder will be out of action, and the speed limit through this section will be reduced to 50km/h at all times.

The changes are required to keep the contractors, pedestrians, cyclists and other road users safe.

Weather permitting, workers will paint temporary lane markings overnight on Sunday from 8pm, and install and fill the orange water-filled barriers overnight on Monday from 9pm. One eastbound traffic lane will be out of action while this work happens, but on both nights, there will be two lanes back in use the following morning by 5.30am at the latest.

For safety reasons, the narrower lanes and 50km/h speed limit will be required on the seaward side of the road where work is happening until the project is finished in mid-2020. The speed limit on the city-bound traffic lanes will remain at 70km/h.

Safe access around the work zone will be provided for people on foot and on bikes. People riding and walking should use the temporary shared route and ramps provided, follow signs, and take extra care.

Cr Sarah Free, Wellington City Council’s Portfolio Leader for Walking and Cycling, says the new paths taking shape on Cobham Drive and closer to the city at Pt Jerningham are key to developing an amazing harbour-side route that people of all ages and abilities will be able to enjoy. “Once complete, it will be safer and easier to walk, run, ride and scoot around this part of the harbour.”

The 7km commuter and recreational coastal route has been named Tahitai by Taranaki Whānui ki te Upoko o te Ika, meaning one tide, one journey. It will also form part of a future Te Aranui o Pōneke/Great Harbour Way.

Cobham Drive is also home to the Meridian Energy Wind Sculpture Walk, and there will be seats and bike parking at the sculptures where people can stop and enjoy the views.

While the work happens, off-road parking areas in the construction zone are temporarily closed.


  1. TrevorH, 20. July 2019, 13:32

    Congratulations to the commissars involved, on behalf of all those stuck in traffic Monday morning.

  2. michael, 20. July 2019, 21:12

    Given the huge expense of all these cycle lanes, when are cyclists going to pay bike registration to build and maintain them. Just like car owners have to pay car registration to build & maintain roads.

  3. Guy M, 21. July 2019, 9:21

    michael – given that even more money has been spent on footpaths over the years, when are pedestrians going to be taxed and registered to maintain those crazy extravagant footpaths? Every human walking on public land should be forced to enter all their details into a register and be made to have to wear a registration number front and back, to ensure that their flagrant disregard for rules is managed and funded correctly. The vast expense and bureaucracy to fund this will be well worth it when we can at last arrest people for jay-walking, overtaking slower walkers, or talking while walking: a very risky prospect.

  4. Glen Smith, 21. July 2019, 9:29

    Congratulations to Sarah Free and the council for their proactive work in promoting and levelling the playing field for safe cycling in our city.
    Trevor. The temporary speed reduction doesn’t affect morning road traffic to the CBD, only the seaward side.
    Michael. Cyclists and PT users subsidise car use through the huge societal subsidies (paid by everybody) enjoyed by car users. This has been discussed in previous threads (see discussion in the Super Cycleway article of July 16 2018) and the sound research basis for this presented. When the subsidy for cyclists matches that enjoyed by car users then a registration fee may be waranted. Based on current subsidy levels this is unlikely to ever happen – car users have got used to having their snouts in the public feeding trough and are reluctant to pay their own way.

  5. Andrew S, 22. July 2019, 10:55

    I can see and hear the single-minded arrogance of cyclists here. A separation mentality. Other people who have to drive to work are taxpayers and ratepayers who funded and still fund the roads. The proliferation of cycle lanes in Wellington was a bad idea.

  6. Dave B, 22. July 2019, 13:52

    @ Andrew. Cycle-lanes would not be needed if motor-vehicles didn’t make the roads so dangerous. The road-toll of deaths and injuries is a major indictment against this flawed transport system. If there were no cyclists at all the problem would still be as bad, or possibly worse as more people would likely drive.

    And bear in mind that many cyclists are car-users and car-owners too. I think the ‘separation mentality’ is more in your mind than real. Local roads are 50% funded through rates, which all home-owners and renters have to pay, whether they ride bicycles, drive cars, or neither. The other 50% comes mostly from fuel taxes, and this is intended to reflect the massive cost of providing a roading network suitable for motor vehicles, which is way in excess of what cyclists need. I think it would be fair to say that with the inescapable 50% share from rates, cyclists overpay on what they actually cost.

  7. Rich, 22. July 2019, 16:30

    I applaud those who still try to explain why cycle lanes are useful for everyone… Some people are just sour about being ‘stuck in traffic’, but I guess they ‘are’ traffic, right?!

    Well done WCC on getting this going, looking forward to using it when done!

  8. Madeleine Simpson, 23. July 2019, 7:46

    The people who cycle are also traffic as they also have cars and drive around.This includes the recreational, fine day only and weekend warrior cyclist.