As we head into Christmas with the knowledge that the City Council will be installing separated cycleways along Ilam Road in the New Year, it seems we’re not the only place in New Zealand to be looking at this type of cycling provision. Auckland Transport are also looking at introducing separated cycleways as part of the Albany Highway upgrade on the North Shore.
Albany Highway is a very busy and fast 2-lane arterial road with growing demands as urban development happens all around it. It has some conventional cycle lanes in parts, but also some grotty roundabouts. The upgrade proposes to make the route a 4-lane highway with traffic signals instead, and provide separated cycleways behind the kerb.
Akld Trpt have also helpfully provided some 3D visual representations of what the finished product might look like; some hi-res versions are available on the Cycling Action Auckland blog. Rather oddly they don’t actually show any people cycling along the facilities and one or two pedestrians seem a little confused about where they should be…
Of particular interest is what they are planning on doing at side-road intersections. People cycling will have the choice of either rejoining the road and using a cycle lane OR joining the footpath and going across a raised crossing. This gets around the slightly pesky situation in NZ whereby side-roads by default have priority over pathways but not over on-road lanes.
It’s nice to see that other Councils around the country are starting to recognise that neither conventional cycle lanes nor shared pathways are going to appeal to many people who’d like to cycle more, especially the “interested but concerned”.