Cycle Aware Wellington - Windy Wheels newsletter July 2008

Memorial Ride
Over 300 Wellington cyclists gathered at Parliament on the 26th June for a memorial ride along the Hutt Road to Petone, as a mark of respect for the two riders killed in the Hutt on 19th June. All who went found this a moving and productive ride. Though CAN didn’t use this event as an opportunity to recruit new members, it clearly has raised the vital issue of cyclists’ safety, as well as general cycling issues: cyclists want action. The atmosphere at the monthly CAW meeting of July 1st was almost volatile, and there were many new faces there, and several new members signed up. As a result of the deaths Fran Wilde of Wellington Regional Council called a meeting for July 9th with Transit and OnTrack management to encourage action on cycle facilities in the Ngauranga – Petone area.

For footage of the ride, see

To follow the discussion triggered by the deaths, go to

Petone to Ngauranga cycling facility
As one the recent cycling fatalities highlighted, the route for cyclists between Petone and Ngauranga is grossly unsatisfactory. There are three main options for its improvement:

1.Upgrade the present cycle track;
2.Improve the highway shoulder, where at present most cyclists ride;
3.Create a new track on the seaward side of the railway lines.

The 3rd option is perhaps the one most attractive to cyclists, although many Hutt-Wellington commuters would probably continue to ride the shoulder. A seaward track would, however, provide an attractive and safe route for recreational and family cycling.

This option would create the central and vital part of the ‘Great Harbour Way’, a proposed cycling and walking route around Wellington Harbour. Despite being a large, ambitious project, the Way could attract interesting funding options, as it could become an important tourist route. Given its scope and vision, it could interest Rotary or other community funders. It would also encourage cycling and walking/running groups to work together.

Expensive, perhaps, but politically it’s a good time to push this, so a CAW sub-committee has been formed to explore and develop the Great Harbour Way. See and for more details. Contact Russell ( or Alastair (04 – 463-5785, if you’re interested in being part of this.

WCC Cycling Plan
This important plan will be going out for consultation in August. It’s important that we – collectively and individually – make submissions on it. At present, Wellington has no cycling strategy, which means they cannot get any government funding for walking or cycling projects. And, without a strategy, they cannot seem to be able to decide what to spend the $75k budgeted for walking/cycling projects. So this plan should make significant difference to cycling in the city.

This situation won't last too long. On June 27th, the Council approved the Draft Cycling Policy to go out for consultation in August.

The policy is quite comprehensive and addresses the needs of all Wellington cyclists. It has special provisions for journeys to and from the CBD, to and from suburban centres, to and from educational centres, as well as trips for recreation. It includes an 11-year implementation plan (2008 to 2019), translating the ideals of the Cycling Policy into management on the ground.

It’s important that we – collectively and individually – make submissions on this policy.

We plan to hold at least one information evening in August to go through the details of the policy, which will help us all to make submissions. We will also try to encourage as many submissions on it from the wider cycling fraternity as possible. If you have any ideas regarding how to reach any number of cyclists (for example, if your employer provides a bike shed where all people store their bikes, that's a good place to distribute postcards) please send your ideas to André (

The Draft Cycling Policy, the document that will go out for consultation, can be downloaded from here:

and, you can check out the Priorities and Allocation of Funds - 2009/10 at:

‘Safer Roads Newtown and Berhampore’
Jane Dawson compiled the CAW submission on this WCC proposal, and it will be available for viewing (under ‘Resources’) on our website shortly.

‘Ngauranga to Airport’
Follow this link to see a copy of CAW's draft submission:

You can use this page to discuss any existing or new issues. Please ask Andre for an invitation to collaborate if you wish to do so.
The deadline for the submission is July 28.

Botanical Gardens
Recently the council put up signs along sections of a path much used by cyclists in the Botanical Gardens asking them to dismount and walk. They claim that there have been complaints from pedestrians of near-misses. The paths allow a direct and safe route for cyclists into the CBD from the northern suburbs. John van der Beuken of CAW is co-ordinating a cyclists’ appeal to the council to continue the cycle access enjoyed before. Contact him if you would like to help with this.
(Ph: 934 6269

There are, as you can see, some crucial plans and other documents awaiting submissions over the next couple of months. Whilst it’s fantastic to have your input into making the CAW submission (see below for how to be involved), it’s also important that as many of us make individual submissions as well. These needn’t be long – in fact they are more likely to make an impact if concise, perhaps two or three pages long at the most. There are sample submissions on our website, or you can always contact any of the committee, or our submissions co-ordinator, Andre ( if you’d like help. And don’t forget that there’ll be a workshop on preparing submissions at the CAN-Do in Christchurch in October. As we heard from some recent submission-converts at the last meeting, they’re actually surprisingly fun to prepare, and leave you feeling empowered and more involved in the democratic process.

Cycling Black-Spot Map
In order to better inform our submissions, we are compiling a map of the Wellington area (see link below) showing the places where the road design is likely to induce an accident sooner or later, or where there is an opportunity for improvements. We would like to use the wisdom of the crowds (your wisdom!) to compile this map.

Please contribute to this Google Map every now and then. Add your own black spots and others, as they occur to you. The map is open for all. You can also add comments to existing issues.

Great Divide Bike Race
CAW member Simon Kennett has now finished his journey from Canada to Mexico, by mountain bike! And he did it in under 20 days. Check it out at

How you can help:
sign up for involvement in the submissions ( 384 7048, 021 773839)
sign up for the ‘Great Harbour Way’ group lead by Russell (
sign up for Botanic Garden route lead by John (contact).
come to the highly enjoyable ‘CAN DO’, 5-6 October in Christchurch. Financial assistance for transport is available. See
do a Planning and Designing for Cycling course. This is a 1-day course run by professional engineers, and is incredibly useful. There is financial assistance available from CAN. For feedback on it, contact Andre or Partick, who both did it recently and found it fantastic (, The web address for the course is:
write letters to the editor
phone up your city councillor or your MP. Illona reports that she has pictures and phone numbers of our councillors, which she can distribute.
join CAW. Encourage your cycling friends and family to join.
ride your bike. Say ‘hi’ to others on bikes.

Next Meeting
CAW meetings are held regularly on the 1st Tuesday of the Month at the Southern Cross Tavern, corner Cuba and Abel Smith Sts. The next meeting will be: Tuesday 5th August, 6pm - 7.30pm.

Cycle Aware Wellington (CAW), website:, email:, postal: PO Box 27120, Wellington
Cycle Advocates’ Network (CAN): website:, email: (Wgtn office),, phone: 04 3854 967, postal: PO Box 6491, Auckland.
Chair: Illona Keenan, email:
Membership: Teresa Maguire, email:, phone: 04 9711505


Wowl this is great.
Spokes Canterbury has some competition for happening comprehensive local newsletter.