Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Waterview: The giant up the road

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  • Russell Brown, in reply to BenWilson,

    Cool, so it’s really a crossing over to Unitec? I couldn’t tell from the map picture.

    I wonder what the justification is – that looks like quite an expensive work.

    It was ordered by the Board of inquiry. NZTA didn't want to build a cycleway along the underground part of the route, but the board basically told them to get with the programme. I can't find the actual minute right now, but it's quite amusing.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

  • Rich of Observationz,

    Back in Wellington • Since Nov 2006 • 5550 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Russell Brown,

    So they built a cycleway that follows an underground tunnel...above ground? And in doing so had to build a huge bridge across a nature reserve???

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to BenWilson,

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    So they built a cycleway that follows an underground tunnel…above ground? And in doing so had to build a huge bridge across a nature reserve???

    Well, yes.

    It's going to be quite a nice bridge, by the look of the artist's impression. And they seem to be incurring considerable additional expense in order to disturb the nature part as little as possible.

    Most of the rest of the route already has an existing path, and much of it is mown fields rather than nature.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch,

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    Did you folks know that the bridge over Oakley Creek was originally supposed to be at Phyllis Reserve (near Blockhouse Bay Intersection)? Photo back from 2010, when I was preparing the Cycle Action Auckland submission...

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch, in reply to Angela Hart,

    the ability to have one tiny little bit of lane dedicated to bicycles that don't want to go up to Pt Chev, cross a very busy road and then back down again through a golf course was somehow lost. They built lanes for trucks to access the works about 6 times during the process and every time my heart would leap! Could this be the bike lane? But no, it's pretty clear now that the concrete cliff where that lane would go is final. Biking infrastructure has essentially remained unchanged on the south side

    We tried. We really did. Before we even got to propose it, they had already used up all the space under the Carrington Road bridge for car lanes... and the weren't going to replace the bridge just for a cycleway improvement. We had our hands full ensuring we got the new cycleway along SH20 and some other improvements. This was a "bridge to far", sadly. But we won the main cycleway, the underpass at Te Atatu, and a few smaller wins.

    Plus the strange idea of some OTHER submitter - who even paid for a traffic expert - to get an extra westbound onramp in front of Oakley Creek hospital (where the cycleway is) was pushed back. Good. That would have made it ~17 lanes there. 16 enough, eh?

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch, in reply to Russell Brown,

    > Same. It's impossible not to be impressed by how it's been executed.

    They had a lot of money, AND an alliance model (where pain and gain of all contractors AND client is shared). Makes for efficient delivery of large projects.

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch, in reply to Russell Brown,

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    this is how the greenway connects to Great North Road.

    Ugly… considering for a fraction of percent more on the total spend they could have put a Te Atatu style underpass in here.

    That would have been so much better.

    Still, I think there's to be a direct path down from your old shop on the GNR- Carrington corner, which is good.

    Yes, but sadly that bit will be horrible, wedged tight between ~5 lanes of GNR and 10 (!) motorway lanes, with not even greenery in the worst section, from memory. As I said in a tweet once, the area reminds me of the Matrix reloaded bleak car chase scene freeway nowadays...

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch, in reply to Glenn Pearce,

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    Jumped the fence at Eric Armishaw park a couple of months ago too

    Ah, so you walked the Dinosaur already?

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Max Robitzsch,

    Did you folks know that the bridge over Oakley Creek was originally supposed to be at Phyllis Reserve (near Blockhouse Bay Intersection)?

    I guess it depends on what side of that bridge you live whether it would have been a good thing :-)

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I guess it depends on what side of that bridge you live whether it would have been a good thing :-)

    Huh? Why would a nice ped / cycle bridge be a problem? We wanted it kept there for better links to Avondale, but judges felt that since it was partly mitigation for Waterview suburb, it should be further north. Fair enough, especially considering that there is a low-level bridge at that location already - and now the cycleway along rail line will give a southern skirting route that allows you to miss the most horrible part of GNR....

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Russell Brown,

    It’s going to be quite a nice bridge, by the look of the artist’s impression.

    I hope it is. Now that I can see where it comes out I can see a point in it. It's an alternate route of similar elevation changes to get to the corner of Rosebank Rd and Blockhouse Bay Rd. Alternate to the awful on-road mess that it currently is. Also providing hooks all the way through on the Unitec side.

    I've been hoping that beside railway path was eventually going to open up - I've stealth cycled it a few times. Not strictly trespassing as far as I could tell, but so undeveloped that it actually felt like it.

    With the connection to New Lynn, it's like actual cycling infrastructure!!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Max Robitzsch,

    We tried. We really did.

    I believe you. I really do. It's such a huge project that I was never more than a little hopeful that the prioritization of the mighty auto would take pole position. The fact that it would help hundreds of cyclists every day would probably not stack up against the tens of thousands of motorists that would use that extra lane.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to BenWilson,

    I’ve been hoping that beside railway path was eventually going to open up – I’ve stealth cycled it a few times. Not strictly trespassing as far as I could tell, but so undeveloped that it actually felt like it.

    I did that once, en route to the New Lynn skate bowl. It did feel rather naughty.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

  • James Littlewood*,

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    Auckland Transport or NZTA or whoever it is, is well used to subjecting cyclists to stairs. This is the southern access to the cycle lane, about 300m from the Spaghetti Western. It's been there throughout the works.

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 410 posts Report Reply

  • James Littlewood*, in reply to Russell Brown,

    I’ve stealth cycled it a few times

    What a good idea. I go to great lengths to figure out acceptable ways to avoid riding along GNR. And if the hideous traffic wasn't bad enough, some people are really bloody hostile!

    Auckland • Since Mar 2008 • 410 posts Report Reply

  • Max Robitzsch, in reply to James Littlewood*,

    Auckland Transport or NZTA or whoever it is, is well used to subjecting cyclists to stairs. This is the southern access to the cycle lane, about 300m from the Spaghetti Western. It’s been there throughout the works.

    That’s a temporary access to the construction yard only – built by the construction folks, will be going once they leave as no crossing / signals / driveway on western side there anymore.

    You could have said that for their own staff they could have added a ramp, but I don’t see it as a massive thing, its only a temporary solution for their own access.

    [Though I guess on some extra relfection I can see now how cyclists riding on-road on GNR but then not wanting to ride through the interchange would use it to go to the east side, and the stairs then wouldn’t be that convenient, true]

    Auckland • Since Sep 2016 • 15 posts Report Reply

  • Angela Hart, in reply to James Littlewood*,

    Auckland Transport or NZTA or whoever it is, is well used to subjecting cyclists to stairs. This is the southern access to the cycle lane, about 300m from the Spaghetti Western.

    with attitude like this from infrastructure providers it's no wonder there's no provision for people with mobility impairments.

    Wheelchair users do like to get out and about. Most of our Auckland based Wheel Blacks use regular roll routes as part of their training (along the waterfront round the bays, for instance). Many wheelchair users hand cycle. Having wheels doesn't mean you shouldn't exercise, but it sure limits the ways you can do that. It's a shame that the authorities fail to recognise wheelers rights and at least attempt to provide similar access to these facilities as for runners, walkers, wobblers and cyclists.

    Fact is once the stuff is built it's extremely difficult and costly to make effective changes, so it tends not to happen.

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2014 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to James Littlewood*,

    Auckland Transport or NZTA or whoever it is, is well used to subjecting cyclists to stairs.

    The moment I realized that they had done that, I took to entering the cycle path here. Which should really have been signed posted as the recommended route for cyclists.

    That stairway entrance is seriously dangerous. It's not as long as a bike, so you can't ride onto it and dismount, without the back end of the bike sticking out onto the road. It's a narrow stairway, not actually wide enough to carry a bike down, certainly not wide enough to walk it down. The area is not wide enough for more than one person with a bike to even be in at all.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • Angela Hart, in reply to Max Robitzsch,

    That’s a temporary access to the construction yard only – built by the construction folks, will be going once they leave

    aah, but convenient for those with the ability to use it

    Christchurch • Since Apr 2014 • 614 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to BenWilson,

    The moment I realized that they had done that, I took to entering the cycle path here. Which should really have been signed posted as the recommended route for cyclists.

    I don't ride that way often – really only coming back from the market on Sundays – but I've never thought of joining the cycleway there. If the traffic's light, I try and get onto the median strip and and join where you do – otherwise, it's waiting for a crossing signal at the Herdman street dairy.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

  • BenWilson, in reply to Russell Brown,

    In your case it might make sense just to stay on Gt North Rd all the way to Pt Chev. I do that when I’m going to the beach. Yes, you do have to have the courage of your convictions to take a lane (the middle one) from the lights by the motorway bridge as far as point that the citybound on-ramp begins, and then to cross in front of vehicles at the give way sign on the offramp. So far, I’ve had no troubles doing it, I’m really only impeding traffic for about 100m, which takes all of 15 seconds. This is one of the perfect examples of where breaking the rules is actually safer. I usually just cheat off at the lights by a few seconds. Then I’m not impeding traffic at all. I’ve reached the point where the traffic splits before the cars do, and I can hug the left from there on.

    ETA: Oh, and when crossing in front of the Give Way, I make 100% certain of eye contact from the drivers. Lots of drivers consider the leftmost lane to essentially not have to Give Way, because it has its own lane, and traffic from the left would be essentially changing lanes, and thus not having right of way. They are wrong about this, but I'm not going to take a car on to prove that. So long as they can see you're asserting that you're a vehicle, they stop.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 10633 posts Report Reply

  • Carol Green,

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    Lovely clear day to get a photo of the monster this morning. That wind though! I was passed by a jogger going up Carrington Rd.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2008 • 53 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to Carol Green,

    Nice shot!

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

  • Russell Brown, in reply to BenWilson,

    In your case it might make sense just to stay on Gt North Rd all the way to Pt Chev.

    Heh. I'm fucked if I'm doing that with the current state of the road past the Connection works. Shit is ugly around there.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22749 posts Report Reply

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