Dud cycle lanes in Paraparaumu

21 12 2009

State Highway 1 through Kapiti is a bit of an over trafficked road, and the best thing about what follows is that there are alternative routes, such as the Kapiti Coastal Cycle Route (along Rosetta Road in Raumati, along Marine Parade through Pram Beach, through the new Kotuku Lakes to Otaihanga and over the walking/cycle swingbridge over the Waikanae River then up Paetawa Road to Peka Peka, and then you’re stuffed)

The speed limit of the traffic at this section is 80km/hr. That is just way too fast to have cars and trucks zipping over your shoulder. This morning there was even a convoy of 3 articulated log trucks. For sending 120 cut logs down a route to the port which is serviced by a railway line parallelling the road sending those 3 trucks with trailers is unforgivable. Thank goodness I wasn’t riding along the cycle lane.

Then the routes are only partially marked in the green paint, for a few tens of metres and then they run out of green paint.

At the northern end of the painted path near Otaihanga Road it finishes at a narrow 100km/hr section of highway.

At the southern end of  the marked cycle lane it is painted to follow SH1 crossing traffic going straight onto Ruahine Street, and if you got past that then you could expect to die when the painted green lane takes you to the railway overbridge, presuming you miss the abrupt green-painted 90 degree turn to go down Hinemoa Street.

Or you could take this confusing marked bicycle exit (near where the green of the top photo stops), but by the end of the off ramp at the Stop sign the highway engineers even forgot it was a cycle lane. So don’t expect to know where to go next.

These marked bicycle lanes were ill-thought out and are going to lead to the death of cyclists. Whoever thought that cycle lanes go on the side of 80 km/hr roads needs to ride a bike and learn something about being shit-scared by the traffic.

With all the current hoo-haa about National Cycleways and Kapiti roading submissions and the NZTA promising to look at cycle options from Wellington to Levin as well as the super-dooper highways, you’d think something good will come of it, but the NZTA came up with these token bike lanes. We need cycle paths linking towns (or at least bridging the gaps between quiet rural roads between the towns), not cycle lanes on the sides of busy highways. If you wouldn’t trust the safety of a 10 year old on their bike on your cycle infrastructure, then it’s not cycle infrastructure at all.

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6 responses

4 01 2010
Su Yin

This applies everywhere in New Zealand to be honest! There are so many that start and end abruptly or are marked in places that make no sense at all.

Perhaps they should hire someone who actually cycles to mark the cycle lanes.

8 10 2010
Electric bike share « Wellington Region Cycleways

[…] be bike share in cities and towns. I think that we deserve decent cycle infrastucture rather than rubbish cycle infrastructure designed by highway engineers. And I advocate a clean environment in which to […]

19 10 2011
Andrew

I must say that whoever thought of putting a cycle lane on an 80kmh road is completely mad. They must have not been cycling a day in their life. If anything, they should lower the speed zones of that road. I mean, if you were to slightly go out of that pathetic lane considered for cyclists, it would be the death of you. The same goes for a motorist that is very aggressive, and decides to hit you. Also, the green bike lane ending on a 100kmh road seems very terrifying. I live in the United States, and have a small shoulder to deal with cars zooming by at sometimes 60-70Kmh. My commute to work is on a 60kmh speed zone road. The footpath is not an option, because of all the ramps, and there are far too many pedestrians that frequent the path.

I definitely agree with Su Yin. IT would be more practical for someone that is an experienced cyclist designing cycle lanes and route. The people that are doing it right now are complete muppets.

Do you ever see any other cyclists on these cycle routes?

19 10 2011
Matthew

Cyclists almost never.

20 11 2011
Max

“I must say that whoever thought of putting a cycle lane on an 80kmh road is completely mad. They must have not been cycling a day in their life.”

Actually, a cycle lane on a 80km/h or even 100 km/h road can be okay – IF it is marked according to the standards, which these clearly aren’t. For an 80 km/h road, the cycle lane recommended width is 2.1m, and the absolute minimum is 1.7m. The engineer who approved these should be raked over the metaphorical coals and shown the standards that apply in NZ (http://www.nzta.govt.nz/resources/nz-supplement-austroads-gtep-part-14-bicycles/docs/nz-supplement-austroads-gtep-part-14-bicycles.pdf)

8 02 2014
Are painted cycle lanes dangerous? | Cycling in Christchurch

[…] Unfortunately the same can’t be said for some narrow, stop-start cycle lanes around the country and that can make the cure worse than the disease; poor maintenance also doesn’t help their […]

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