Join us at our August 2020 meeting

Bikes, plants and picnic tables set up in a carpark outside Avis in Wellington
#Picnicsinparks sets up outside Avis – pic credit Callum McMenamin

The days are starting to get longer again, and it’s time for another meeting! Join us on 4 August for more bikey goodness:

  • the latest from WCC on bike projects
  • last chance to have your say on the Golden Mile
  • Petone-Ngauranga: progress, billboards, tinkering around the edges and more
  • Eastern Active Streets
  • #Picnicsinparks
  • Biketober
  • Bike brunch, woohoo!

and more….

6-7:30 pm Tuesday 4 August at the Sustainability Trust on Forresters Lane

Use Facebook? Add the event to your calendar for reminders and stuff.

#LoveLocalByBike – July

Well done to our competition winners for July!

The next round of the competition runs from 27th July to the end of August. To enter:

  • Visit a local business on your bike
  • Post publicly on your social media profile (Instagram, Twitter or Facebook) with a picture of your bike at or near the business
  • Tag your post with the hashtag #LoveLocalByBike and tag the business if they have a social media page

That’s all and you’ll be in the draw to win! We’ll have prizes from The Roxy Cinema, Skipping Stone, Hopper – Refill, Shop & Café to give out at the end of August

Darcy and Nicole win prizes from Get Lost Cycling and Woodstock florist for their Instagram posts in July:

Bikes & Brunch, 16 August

Bring along your whānau and have a chat about all things bike in Te Whanganui-a-Tara!

We’ll be sharing ideas on fun places to bike with family and friends around the Wellington region and places to do a good biking staycation in Aotearoa, so bring your favourite biking stories. Also, feel free to bring along friends new to biking in Wellington and share tips with each other about safe and comfortable routes around the city.

We will be catering and making heaps of tea and coffee but feel free to bring along your own kai to share.

Sustainability Trust, Forresters Lane, Te Aro
10:30 am – 1:30 pm
Facebook event reminder

Golden Mile – LGWM Presentation

Let’s Get Wellington Moving representatives Selwyn and Seb presented the three Golden Mile options to Cycle Wellington at our meeting on 7th July. The deadline to submit on the concepts is 26th July. Go here to submit your views: https://yourvoice.lgwm.nz – take a look at our submission guide too: https://cycwell.wordpress.com/2020/06/30/golden-mile-submission-guide/

Patrick took some notes for us and I’ve updated them with a bit more background from https://lgwm.nz/our-plan/our-projects/golden-mile/:

  • After consultation, the recommended design could be a blend of options
  • “Closely located bus stops” mean longer journeys due to buses stopping more frequently. Bus stops may be removed to speed up the network
  • After removal, bus stops are still within a 5 minute walk from much of central city for an average person
  • Under most options, there would no dedicated bike lanes except on Courtenay Place, which forms part of the strategic central city cycling network
Possible layout of Courtenay Place
(https://lgwm.nz/assets/Documents/Technical-Documents/Golden-Mile/Golden-Mile-Short-List-Report-June-2020.pdf – page 150)
  • People on bikes are still permitted on the Golden Mile in all three concepts. WCC is working on the cycling network as part of the City Streets programme. It’s unknown what routes this would take, but it wouldn’t be Lambton. It could be a two-way bike lane on Featherston Street.
  • Removal of private motor vehicles, side street intersections and 30 km/h speeds means less risk to people on bikes, scooters and foot. Cycling crashes along the Golden Mile are most likely to happen at intersections and as a result of entering/leaving car parks as well as car ‘dooring’
  • Most options expand pedestrian and shared space
  • Access for people who rely on motor vehicle access e.g. due to disability, could be from side streets
  • Motor vehicle deliveries could be restricted during the day. Bike courier deliveries not restricted
  • Light Rail is not part of these proposals. Bus priority on Golden Mile could remain alongside a future LRT route (which is likely not to be on Golden Mile)
  • Higher costs of the Transform option are, in part, due to higher spec materials
  • The Grey St / Lambton Quay intersection is an example of how side streets would be rebuilt in the Transform option:
Projects - Grey Street pocket square - Wellington City Council


Intersections at Willis/Manners/Boulcott, and Courtenay/Taranaki/Dixon pose some problems.


LGWM are running a series of presentations to stakeholders in the coming weeks, they also have a pop-up at the Te Ara Taiao container at the end of Bond Street showing plans to people as they pass by on Willis Street:

Golden Mile Submission Guide

A look at a possible future for Courtenay Place

Overview

We’re excited at the possibility for transformational change through Wellington’s city center. We recommend supporting Concept 3: Transform as this is the only option that will provide separated space for cyclists of all ages and abilities to travel along sections of the Golden Mile.

Here’s the link to make your submission:

https://yourvoice.lgwm.nz/

30 Second submission?

Go for one of these three super-quick options:

2 Minute submission?

Skip to step 4 and support separated cycle lanes and the removal of all vehicle traffic other than buses.

In Step 5, give your support to Concept 3 for all streets to allow space for dedicated cycle infrastructure.

In for the long haul?

Concept 1: Streamline

We like:

  • Closing off some side streets will be a significant improvement for pedestrians, cyclists and public transport
  • Repurposing parking spaces to increase footpath space by 30%

We don’t like:

  • No provision of cycling infrastructure anywhere along the route
  • Allowing general traffic on the Golden Mile will reduce safety and amenity for cyclists and pedestrians
  • Buses will still face significant delays caused by interference of general vehicle traffic along Courtenay Place, Willis Street and Lambton Quay

Concept 2: Prioritise

We like the same good things as Concept 1, but in addition:

  • Closing more side streets to make it easier to walk along Lambton Quay
  • Removing general traffic will make the Golden Mile a safer and more attractive place to be
  • Removing general traffic will make it quicker and easier to travel through the city by bus or bike

We don’t like:

  • Still no provision of cycling infrastructure anywhere along the route
  • Keeping four lanes for buses will result in a more dangerous environment for cyclists and pedestrians and could encourage unsafe behaviour from bus drivers. We don’t think this will result in a noticeable improvement in bus travel times over option 3

Concept 3: Transform

We like the same good things as Concept 1 and 2, but in addition:

  • This is the only concept that will allow for dedicated space for cyclists and scooters. This is especially important for the parts of the Golden Mile that are planned to be part of the city center cycling network.
  • Closing almost all the side streets along the Golden Mile will leave only 4 intersections along the length where cyclists and pedestrians will have to interact with general traffic (down from 15 currently).
  • Reducing the road width will result in a massive 75% increase to footpath space.

We don’t like:

  • We’re not sure if buses need to remain along the entire length of the Golden Mile. Maybe this change can be made in the future if rapid transit is introduced.

Cycling and Scooters

We think it’s a great idea to have cycle lanes along Courtenay Place and Lambton Quay to make it easy for people on bikes to travel to work and shop at business along the route. We recommend that cycle lanes are separated, both from buses and from pedestrians. This makes it rideable for people of all ages and abilities.

A newly built separated cycle lane in Auckland

Other vehicle access

We don’t think regular access for vehicles other than buses should be allowed except in exceptional circumstances. If they are to be allowed, then we think it should only be between midnight and 7am so as to not conflict with regularly scheduled bus services.

Public spaces

Have your say on what you’d like to see from our public spaces. We encourage a “place making” approach, where people have several reasons to visit such as green spaces, seating, art, retail, bike parking, wifi, charging points.

An example of a place where Wellingtonians enjoy spending time

Overall

We strongly recommend supporting concept 3 for all streets as it is the only option that will allow for the provision of cycling infrastructure along parts of the route.

Removing a lane along Willis Street in concept 3 should allow a separated space for cyclists and scooters to be created. This would be in line with the planned Central City Cycling Network. We’re not sure why it hasn’t been included at this stage of the planning.

Where the road is too narrow for cycling infrastructure to be provided we think cyclists and scooters should be allowed to travel along the route by marking the route as a ‘bus lane’. Current ‘bus-only’ lanes make it illegal to travel southbound on Willis Street or along Manners Street by bike.

Where side streets are closed access should be provided for cyclists to travel to and from these onto the Golden Mile. Bond St and Grey St are examples, although the connections could be improved.

Come along to our monthly meeting on July 7th, 6pm at the sustainability trust to talk to Let’s Get Wellington Moving representatives and ask any further questions you might have. https://www.facebook.com/events/3189314641135391

https://yourvoice.lgwm.nz/

WE 💜 PARKING POLICY SUBMISSION GUIDE

Is parking a problem for you?

Long-awaited projects like Newtown Connections have been delayed for this policy, so we’re happy to see it arrive. You might think parking is boring but this policy will be instrumental in helping the council manage concerns and issues around parking in Wellington. It prioritises space for people and movement, helping you get around on a bike comfortably and easily. Let’s get submitting and make sure that the council is making the best decisions around allocating space in our city!

Start your journey here: https://www.letstalk.wellington.govt.nz/managecityparking/survey_tools/have-your-say1

Objectives

The Policy starts with some objectives. We think they’re all important and you should support them. The last objective of “Service Excellence” might be the least important. It’s focused on investing in making paying for parking easier. We’re not sure that’s worth spending money on.

One objective that could be added is supporting “Economic Localism”. That means giving businesses more say over the use of street space directly outside their shop. If a cafe wants to turn their car park into outdoor seating, or a store wants to have bike parking directly out front, the council should make that change as easy as possible. Good examples might be along Marion Street outside Bicycle Junction or Vivian St outside MyRide or Deco Bikes.

Principles

We’re concerned about the first principle. The full text of this principle includes: Any parking management changes will consider the effect that related changes in revenue will have on ratepayers. The council makes revenue from its car parks and so currently has a financial conflict in reducing the number of car parks in the city. This principle should make sure that the council realises the true value of the land currently used for car storage, and explores other avenues to replace the lost income. Improvements to liveability, transport choice and public health benefit us all. We think the rest of the principles are helpful.

Parking Priority

Overall we agree with the priorities for parking spaces as suggested. The movement of people and goods (cycleways!) is given the highest priority, but there are some issues.

We don’t think that on-street car parking (Short-stay, Residents, or Commuter) should ever be given high priority. This places on-street parking at the same level as bus-stops, and in many cases above mobility parking, EV parking,car-share, bicycle/micro-mobility parking or loading zones. This is counter to the council’s own sustainable transport hierarchy and objective of “Becoming an Eco-City”

The worst cases of this are in the “City Fringe” and “Outer Residential Areas”. We recommend disagreeing with the priorities suggested in these two areas, and saying why in question 14.

We would like to see bicycle and micro-mobility parking prioritised everywhere. Many Wellington houses are up loads of stairs that can make taking your bike home everyday a heavy deal. Some cities provide lockable neighbourhood bike storage and we think WCC should prioritise space for doing the same.

We think motorcycle parking should be given higher priority. Motorcycles are not allowed to park in paid car parks, and the undersupply of dedicated parking results in motorcycles being parked on footpaths and bike racks. Another option would be to open up the use of paid car parks to more types of vehicles.

Pricing Approach

We support the implementation of demand-responsive pricing as it will result in better turnover for car parks, meaning less cars driving round the city hunting for parks. 

However, we don’t think that this is enough. The value of central city land is far greater than what the council currently makes back from parking charges. If a park has low usage, we think that rather than make it super-cheap, we should find something better to do with the space.

International research has shown that pricing, rather than time limits are:

  • Easier to administer and enforce
  • Can end up being cheaper for people parking
  • Lead to more efficient parking

Residents Parking Scheme

We think all of the suggestions would be good additions to the scheme, except for discounted exemption permits. Residents’ parking is already 95% cheaper than market rates for car storage, so we shouldn’t reduce prices any further. Currently the council is restricted by the Local Government Act in how much it can charge for Residents Parking. We’d like to see the council lobby Central Government to allow aligning the price of Residents Parking with the opportunity costs of providing it. It is important to note that discounts can entrench the view that parking is a right or entitlement, this makes repurposing that space very difficult in future.

We recommend ranking the priorities for permits in the order they’re listed, but with “Existing dwellings with 1 or more off-street space” and “second permits” ranked 7th & 8th respectively.

Barriers to public transport use

Here’s your space to let the council know what makes it hard for you to get around Wellington by bus or bike?

https://www.letstalk.wellington.govt.nz/managecityparking/survey_tools/have-your-say1

Innovating Streets Round 1

Ciclovia!

To make a quick submission in support, please go here: https://wellington.govt.nz/have-your-say/public-inputs/consultations/open/covid-19-response-projects—proposed-traffic-resolutions OR just email your thoughts to trfeedback@wcc.govt.nz, covering as many or as few projects as you are interested in (use the TR code to help officers line up your feedback, e.g. TR99-20 for Brooklyn Hill)

You have until 5pm on Thursday 28th May to submit

Background

How does this work? Why are we doing Traffic Resolutions?

  • Temporary projects – supposed to be fast, agile
  • Traffic Resolutions (TRs) are usually for small things or last steps in the consultation process
  • Auckland and others went ahead with changes without consultation. Wellington added in this layer of consultation rather than emergency change because it is important to gather public feedback
  • The projects are supposed to be flexible and changeable throughout their life
  • Innovating Streets projects are intended to be part of the consultation process – keep in touch with the Council as you use the new street layouts, saying what you like about them
  • Things that are not easy to reverse (heaps of tarseal/concrete) or are not easy to implement at this time of year (e.g. some types of paint need dry/warm weather) are not likely to be included. Expect things like Crawford Road/Rugby Street (near the Basin), safe hit posts similar to those used outside the library and on construction projects around the city

What next?

  • 28th May – Feedback closes
  • 11th June – Council Strategy and Policy Committee meeting – Council reviews feedback and votes on the proposals
  • 11th September – Projects that were approved by Council should be implemented by this date (3 months from the meeting)

In detail, the resolutions here relate to these projects and below we’ll explain what’s being done and things to think about when writing a more detailed submission – (handy hint – copy and paste this table, then fill it in with your comments if you’re doing an email to trfeedback@wcc.govt.nz):

TR98-20 – Evans Bay Parade – Greta Point to Cobham Drive1600m temporary lane on seaside parking lane
TR99-20 – Brooklyn Hill (uphill)750m lane using plastic bollards (similar to Rugby St & Constable St)
TR100-20 – Onepu Road260m lane both sides connecting Rongotai Road to the Leonie Gill pathway along Onepu Road
TR101-20 – Shelly Bay to Scorching Bay one-way and shared path3km one-way system between Scorching Bay and Shelly Bay (in that direction). Seaward traffic lane converted to a shared walking and cycling path
TR102-20 – Pedestrian route from Wellington Station to Stout StreetClosure of angle parking on one side of Stout Street. Could consider switching to parallel parking

Hold up? What happened to Victoria and Featherston Streets I hear you shout. Well, Victoria Street and Featherston Street have been accepted by NZTA, but will be coming in a future round of Traffic Resolutions due to more complex design:

TR98-20 – Evans Bay Parade

This fills in the ‘gap’ between on-road cycle lanes at Greta Point and the new path at Cobham Drive. It’s a two-way lane and gives people on bikes space without encroaching on footpath space.

This is a good opportunity to trial this section, when the cycleway is completed from Oriental Parade all the way round to Greta Point, this could make for a complete, high-quality cycle route from the waterfront all the way to Miramar and Kilbirnie. There are some very narrow pavement areas around Greta Point and the flats, the proposal will help solve some of the potential conflict with walkers and runners.

TR99-20 – Brooklyn Road (uphill)

This is a great plan. There are some concerns around the intersections of Bidwill Street and Washington Avenue. They should be able to design these junctions not to formally have to give way by stopping protection a bit earlier (as they will be inside the kerbs). Out of those two, Washington is the bigger concern, lots of people swing around you to turn there so many riders tend to move out of the shoulder into the (left of) the lane there to make it clear that they are continuing. That helps most drivers hang back and turn behind you.

Other positives to consider when making your submission:

  • Ability to be a bit further away from the big trucks (for comfort and safety, but also studies show even a small distance makes a big difference to the pollutants you inhale)
  • Less of a worry about getting squeezed past in the narrow parts, or specifically at the crossing just downhill from Bidwill St
  • Feeling less vulnerable on the left-hand corners in the upper half of the hill (drivers often cut the corner into the shoulder space currently
  • Less risk of close passes on the corner opposite the junction with Ohiro road
  • Evidence collected in March 2019 shows that speeding is fairly prevalent on the way up Brooklyn Hill, making sharing the road with two-lane traffic quite unpleasant if you are unlucky enough to be overtaken by two vehicles at once!

A few things that may be cleared up in a more detailed design, but worth highlighting as potential omissions:

  • In quite a few places, some of the pavements are extended out into the road to help people crossing the road (buildouts), these need to be factored into the design – small inexpensive ramps could be added to each side to allow people on bikes to go up and over them
  • the corner opposite the Ohiro Road junction at the top – designs extend around the corner; will either mean taking you onto the footpath OR sacrificial safe hit posts on the corner that may get taken out by a big truck or bus every couple of days or more often.
  • the scope stops just short of the Helen St turning, which is also a pinch if someone is waiting to turn right

TR100-20 – Onepu Road

This is a busy location with traffic turning into and out of car parks and the bus depot. On Facebook we saw some responses from local riders who completely avoid this area because of the multiple driveways/entrances into and out of car parks and petrol station.

If you need to visit Pak’n’Save, Countdown or Warehouse Stationery then these changes will make visits safer on a bike. Currently, visibility is hampered by street-parked vehicles making driveway entrances/exits a potentially dangerous place for people riding bikes.

There are a few other interesting ideas coming out of this area – with filtered permeability (closing streets to through traffic) a possibility in some of the streets that cross the Leonie Gill Pathway, making for a more continuous ride from Onepu Road through to the retail park, while reducing traffic for residents of those streets.

TR101-20 – Massey Road – Shelly Bay to Scorching Bay

The inland lane will allow motor vehicles to travel from Shelly Bay to Scorching Bay, travelling clockwise around the peninsula. The seaward lane will be converted to a shared path for people on foot and on bikes.

This one divided opinion on Facebook:

  • Faster riders may still use the roadway in the clockwise direction
  • Less confident riders, families taking kids out for a ride, runners and walkers welcome the increased amenity and safety from not having to walk, run or cycle along a narrow verge
  • The Ciclovia series proved that this area is incredibly popular when closed to cars – there were even some calls to consider more regular/permanent closures
  • One other alternative is to restrict through traffic at Pt Halswell (the northernmost point)

TR102-20 – Stout Street

This one’s primarily an improvement for pedestrians, but sometimes that’s us too. We support the changes to Stout Street because it’s a high-footfall route. Hopefully it will also soon be at 30km/h making it much more pleasant to cycle along too.

Removing angle parks will help reduce risk for people riding bikes slightly, eliminating some blind-spots, as well as allowing people riding bikes leaving the front of the MBIE offices a clear way off the kerb without needing to walk between gaps in cars or to the end of the block.

Submit

If you got this far, well done! Just to re-iterate:

To make a quick submission in support, please go here: https://wellington.govt.nz/have-your-say/public-inputs/consultations/open/covid-19-response-projects—proposed-traffic-resolutions OR just email your thoughts to trfeedback@wcc.govt.nz, covering as many or as few projects as you are interested in (use the TR code to help officers, e.g. TR99-20 for Brooklyn Hill)

You have until 5pm on Thursday 28th May to submit

Wellington City Council: Innovating Streets Recommendation

Credit: http://www.islandbaycycleway.org.nz/ – I can’t wait to bike to football!

Full text of Council Innovating Streets recommendation, passed by 13 votes to 2 on Thursday 7th May 2020, with background and commentary:

Apply to the Waka Kotahi – New Zealand Transport Agency’s Innovating Streets fund for the seven temporary projects to address respond to COVID-19, and for the five projects that meet their tactical urbanism criteria, in columns 2 and 3 in the table in paragraph 17 of the report.

The seven temporary projects are:

Evans Bay Parade – Greta Point to Cobham Drive1600m temporary lane on seaside parking lane
Brooklyn Hill (uphill)750m lane using plastic bollards (similar to Rugby St & Constable St)
Onepu Road260m lane both sides connecting Kilbirnie shops to Leoone Gill pathway

This proposal was extended by an amendment raised by Deputy Mayor Free, seconded Councillor Condie. The lane now extends north to Rongotai Road
Shelly Bay to Scorching Bay one-way and shared path3km one-way system between Scorching Bay and Shelly Bay (in that direction). Seaward traffic lane converted to a shared walking and cycling path
Pedestrian route from Wellington Station to Stout StreetClosure of angle parking on one side of Stout Street. Could consider switching to parallel parking
Featherston Street600m lane – involving a traffic lane reallocation
Victoria Street1400m Temporary bus lane and protected upgrade for existing cycle lane
Seven Innovating Streets proposals

Notify the traffic resolutions for the seven COVID-19 projects as soon as possible.

The lead time for traffic resolutions is 14 days and allows time for public consultation on the measures. Watch this space for how to submit your feedback.

Increase the scope of the Onepu Road pop-up cycle lane to extend from Leonie Gill pathway to Rongotai Road (an additional 200m), at a revised total estimated cost of $40,000.

Extends this pop-up lane to meet the cycle network at the KFC/Pak n Save intersection. The total estimated additional cost to Wellington City Council, if this is accepted by NZTA is just $4,000, NZTA picking up 90% = $36,000

Note that officers are looking into opportunities to expedite the Central City Safer Speeds Package.

This is moving through Council at the moment, see updates here: https://lgwm.nz/saferspeeds

Subject to approval of this first round of Innovating Streets applications, officers will investigate making further applications for additional temporary projects from the long list of projects already identified, subject to a clear understanding of resourcing implications, including cost and impact on existing programmes of work. Any additional application will be presented to Council for consideration.

If the first round of applications for the seven projects outlined above is accepted – Council will know by 8th June, then Officers will investigate more options for the second round of funding:

The projects that are likely to be investigated are those on this list:

  • Oriental Bay
  • Ira St to Broadway (Miramar)
  • Constable Street
  • Burma Road
  • Onepu Road (Kilbirnie Shops to Lyall Bay)
  • Middleton Road
  • Taranaki Street
  • The Quays

These suggestions were removed at this stage due to staff concerns around Risk:

  • Significant removal of parking leading to low ‘perceived’ public acceptability
  • Longer lead time to develop, design and implement – meaning the measures would not be in place for long before needing to be removed when ‘normal’ traffic levels resume

NZTA may be able to help with the latter by providing funding and resourcing for the development and design effort. This could lessen the risk aspect of the Taranaki Street and Quays cycle lanes.

Open letter: Innovating Streets proposal must create a safe Essential Workers’ Route

Full text of letter sent to Wellington City Councillors on Tuesday 5th May 2020 at 7:15pm

Kia ora Councillors,

Firstly, thank you for your work with Officers in producing the Innovating Streets proposal to be presented on Thursday 7 May.

These moves need to support physical distancing in the city centre, and a return-to-work without traffic chaos from avoidance of public transport by allowing more people to walk and bike in safety.

But the proposal is too timid to achieve these aims. The most significant ideas in the report have been excluded using a risk measure that focuses heavily on roadside parking (a small proportion of city centre parking).

Cycle Wellington proposes you add an Essential Workers Route – by reinstating some of the rejected options and extending a route to the hospital.

This route runs from Thorndon Quay to Wellington Hospital via Bunny or Whitmore St, the Quays, Taranaki St, Adelaide Rd and Riddiford St. It uses interventions discussed in the report, and other simple temporary changes, to close the gaps in current paths making a continuous, safe route from Ngauranga to Newtown.

To create this route, for modest funding assuming Waka Kotahi contribute 90%, you need to add to your Innovating Streets proposal:

  • Thorndon Quay, safe travel, by changing angle parking temporarily to parallel parking throughout. Importantly, this retains parking outside all businesses that currently have it.
  • The Quays* – convert a traffic lane on the seaward side of the Quays to 2-way cycling – riders joining at existing waterfront crossings. Faster riders will be diverted away from the waterfront, reducing conflict and helping walkers maintain distance.
  • Taranaki Street* – protected lanes either side, possibly including use of pedestrian crossing phase where cyclists cross traffic
  • Adelaide Road – Move to a 24h bus/cycle lane 
  • Riddiford Street – removal of parking at John St intersection (also supporting physical distancing around local businesses)

*Reinstated options

With these changes, Wellington could stand proud among Auckland and other cities taking bold steps to protect their people in the aftermath of COVID-19 and commence tipu toa – building back better.

Noho ora mai,

Mark Johnston & Linda Beatson

Co-Chairs Cycle Wellington