They work for you!

The chaps at Wellington City Council are doing some really good things for us around the city. They’ve obviously been listening & are taking us seriously.

The first thing on the list is the planned change to the stormwater grates. The Council has been testing new designs with horizontal bars and have found a winner. The grates have been commissioned and will be installed on a rolling basis once they arrive. There’s a list of top sites that will get priority, and in fact there’s a couple in Manners Street already. Keep your eye out for them on your route!

The Council is also putting in a few grab rails around the place. There’s one at the bottom of Bowen Street already. They’re currently painted white but there was a suggestion made of painting them in red & white candy stripes. I particularly like that idea.

The Thorndon Quay has a new advanced stop box at the Featherston Street/Bunny Street intersection, and they’re looking into putting one on Bunny Street as well.

In that same area, the part of Bunny Street that is currently only open to vehicles on Vic Uni business is to be officially opened up to cyclists. Since it’s a safe road already well-used by riders without causing any difficulties to the university, this seems like good sense.

The Council has also marked the location of bike stands on the Journey Planner – another top idea.

Responsibility for cleaning the Petone-Wellington path is now with NZTA or whatever they’re called these days. The good (great!) news is that they’ll be sending a sweeper down there regularly. They have a lot more clout when it comes to closing the road, which is apparently required if you want to get a sweeper in there, so expect to see some big improvements there.

On the topic of that pathway, it’s being investigated for upgrade/redevelopment as part of the Ngauranga Triangle study (my notes are a bit illegible here – hope that’s the right name) but the big spanner is to do with the rail lines. NZ Rail won’t allow a level crossing to be put in which means building a bridge. To get the bridge high enough to get over the overhead lines but keep it at a gradient bikes can manage easily means a really really long bridge. I can’t recall the figures but I think the bridge was something like 90% of the $12 million cost of the upgrade. Dear, lovely NZ Rail, would you please…

Finally, if there are any problems such as glass on the road, call the Council on 04 801 4444 OR use their shiny new txt service, the number for which is 3400. The contractor gets notified immediately and can go & sort it out pronto.

It’s really good to see all this stuff going on in Wellington City. It would be great to know what the other councils in the region are doing too.

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