Hard News by Russell Brown

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Hard News: Towards new human spaces

8 Responses

  • Deborah,

    Titirangi is the king of narrow or totally non-existent footpaths! But walkers and runners and cyclists have been fantastic about negotiating the space. I’ve noticed that we’ve got some nice courtesies around stepping out into the road: people who can see any oncoming vehicles tend to step out leaving the pavement for people who can’t see them, adults step out for families with children, everyone steps out for people with babies and toddlers in pushchairs, and for people using mobility devices.

    But some motorists are still charging around at 50kph… just a little slowing down would be good.

    I’d be in favour of slower speed rates on suburban roads. And I’d love downtown Auckland to be more pedestrianised. My only major concern would be access for people who can’t walk more than a few metres: we need to make sure that we have some well specified exemptions so that people with disabilities can still access services as needed.

    New Lynn • Since Nov 2006 • 1447 posts Report

  • Tom Semmens,

    I would quite like some sort of cycling infrastructure from St Lukes to Greenlane, but I suspect that will have to wait for Jacinda repulsing an alien invasion from beyond our Galaxy.

    Sevilla, Espana • Since Nov 2006 • 2217 posts Report

  • Hebe,

    Pedestrians and cyclists sharing paths is infuriating. Try walking with a dog and two pre-schoolers and three adults as we have done at times over the last year before the pandemic threat. No wins for anyone.
    Add a codger with a quaked knee and it becomes almost a matter of life and death.
    Who decided it was okay? No-one asked the little people.
    The increasing number of electric bikes has made the paths around here even more lethal. And no I didn’t hear the bell because you tinged it many metres away and my hearing is dull.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2899 posts Report

  • Bart Janssen,

    One thing I hope will happen is that so many people are discovering they really can walk or cycle to the local market and they might just continue.

    Cars are useful and valuable, but we've seen them dominate beyond their real value - no small part because of huge marketing by the car industry.

    This enforced, slower world of lockdown has given people a chance to see that the car isn't as necessary as they thought.

    And there's also the extra sense of community walkers and riders have, we wave and nod and say hi in a way that you just don't get in a car and now everyone is experiencing that community. Maybe just maybe it will last.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4461 posts Report

  • Bart Janssen, in reply to Hebe,

    Totally agree Hebe.

    As a cyclist the shared paths have always been a nightmare. You never know if the dog will stay put or if the child will decide to run across the path in front of you and pedestrians can turn on a dime much quicker than a cyclist can avoid.

    The idea that they should be forced into one space is another consequence of the planners dedication to the the car. No-one, not cyclist, not pedestrian, not scooter, not even a bus can be allowed to restrict the car. And so all us unimportant humans get shoved into one tiny space that we share to the best of our ability. But it doesn't work.

    And now in the time of lockdown I avoid all the bike paths and ride on the roads because with fewer cars they are spaces I can ride with ease and all the pedestrians on the paths can walk without worrying I might not be able to stop if they wobble or step in an unexpected direction.

    I would say that my bell (a Kong) seems to be easier to hear - except if the person has their headphones on :(. It's a lower pitch and easier on older ears.

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 4461 posts Report

  • Emerald,

    "I am wary of the perils of seizing on the current crisis as a signal that the time for our respective causes has come"
    Thank you for making this point. There's a lot of opportunism on both sides of the political spectrum, and some borders on schadenfreude, which is just gruesome.

    Dunedin • Since Sep 2012 • 1 posts Report

  • Russell Brown,

    Auckland • Since Nov 2006 • 22850 posts Report

  • Hebe, in reply to Bart Janssen,

    YES!! “Shared” paths are lose-lose for all users.

    Christchurch • Since May 2011 • 2899 posts Report

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