Posts by Wichid

  • Hard News: Local journeys on the cusp of…, in reply to Tom Semmens,

    The problem is essentially a structural one. From the old 'roads first' policy, for most trips, the car is the most practical tool for people, but with really bad outcomes for congestion, environment, etc. This has created a funding feedback loop where funding for transport is gathered in part from road user charges and petrol levies are spent on more roads, each with diminishing returns on investment. Central government, through the NZTA only spends this money on roads, and by deciding what local roads get government funding they largely set the agenda. NZTA contributes funding to maintenance, but only the road surface. The footpath, cycleway, etc will go unfunded and degrade through neglect unless council funds it entirely from rates.

    If you'd like new footpaths where they were never built, you'll need to demonstrate that there is sufficient demand for them, a bit like swimming the river to show a bridge is needed. We can't even fund new roads to new housing developments from our rates though.

    What we need is a government policy where a much greater, sensible % of transport funding must go to walking and cycling projects. This would be much better than the urban cycleway lump sum as it would be on-going money. People howl about this because they see it as motorists paying for other people's transport, but that's the funding mechanism we have. Realistically, we need a new way of collecting money which is exactly where the road pricing fits in. It would manage peak demand with variable pricing and we could invest that money in under-developed modes of transport. More likely the Govt will just legislate that the NZTA controls that money too and we'd end up with more pointless duplicate roads.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report

  • Hard News: So what now?,

    Serious question, if the Out of Scope changes have inter-dependencies on other changes then by definition they’re not Out of Scope surely?

    What would be an example of an Out of Scope change that had inter-dependencies on other changes.

    True, but I think that the anti-density groups would have just used some other excuse to force councillors to withdraw the evidence.

    'Out of scope' zones should really be 'not raised specifically so far.' That doesn't mean that it isn't part of the process of developing a coherent Unitary Plan. The IHP will be considering changes in much the same way themselves. Peoples shock at the development of the councils evidence for change is more a result of non-participation from stakeholders throughout the process since 2013. Particularly the right wing block of councillors themselves.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report

  • Hard News: So what now?, in reply to Glenn Pearce,

    The council officers did a fine job regarding Glendowie against a hostile, rude and out of order mob behind them. The plan is a 30 year plan and the crowd seemed to think that housing changes would be instantaneous while supporting infrastructure would never happen.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report

  • Hard News: So what now?,

    Removing just the out-of-scope changes isn't possible as you end up with a pock marked map that, because of inter-dependencies will collapse on itself. The Council Officers made it clear that the spatial application of the planning principles is supported by evidence up to a professional standard. The planners can't remove large sections of the submission and then defend the evidence of what is left. They even made it clear that there is no 'old version' to roll back to. You either apply the planning principles spatially with supporting evidence, or fail. Planners can't conduct themselves to their required professional standard to Hearings Panel.

    So now council officers are in a bind, they don't have time to rework the council submission in any meaningful way. They can't defend half a submission as they've been asked.

    Likely outcome is that Council fails to make a submission, leaving the IHP to consider other large players to fight for much higher density (Housing NZ etc).

    Resulting from this will likely be a delay, wrangling and an unbalanced city. Infrastructure spending is heavily tied to projected population growth. Just as Lake Rd, Devonport is a nightmare, the well healed Eastern Suburbs will see Tamaki Drive and other major routes endure all day congestion while interchanges and metro systems thrive out West and South. That's the way it should go if the NIMBYs fight progress.

    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report

  • Hard News: Public Address Word of the…,


    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report

  • Hard News: Change for the Better, in reply to Sam M,

    No, cycle crossings are matched to traffic movements in similar directions like other pedestrian crossings

    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report

  • Speaker: Living under bridges,

    I don't necessarily believe that you need to have separation here between people on bicycles and people walking if it's clearly a shared space. The limitation will be that when it's really busy you just won't be able to ride a bike.

    If you look at other events such as walking and cycling over the harbour bridge there have been some crowds that made it impossible to cycle. The Quay St open day was another example. No space to cycle most of the time. It was slightly annoying as only the half the road was closed to motor traffic but there were no safety issues.

    People moderate their behaviour in a shared space. If there are thousands of people strolling over in a busy peak then people on bicycles will roll very slowly and carefully around them if they can. We see this everywhere and it works well. As always, a ding of a bell or a simple 'excuse me' solves most problems.

    Just like on the road, if we mark clear lines of territory people will be encouraged to speed up due to increased 'perceived safety' lowering 'actual safety'. One person walking takes a step sideways to take a photo while a person riding sees a clear cycle lane and they get clipped. If there's no clear delineation it encourages everyone to use caution.

    This DOES NOT apply to proper separated cycle lanes on roads though. They are crucial.

    SkyPath is a good thing but I believe this shared path will turn into a walking track just naturally when it's busy.

    The question then becomes - do we want to add separation for the convenience of people on bicycles when it's moderately busy?

    Auckland • Since Jul 2015 • 7 posts Report