CAW minutes 6 August 2013

CAW minutes 6 August 2013

Present: James (chair), Brian, Hayley, Sridhar, Frank, Matthew, Matthew, Cameron, Jo, Alex, Ian, Patrick, Jill, Malcolm, Don, Tom, Eleanor, Hilleke, Mike, Sarah, Alastair (minutes).

Hayley Robinson (independent candidate for Onslow-Western Ward) talked about her policies. Emphasises whole transport picture including cycling. Bikes free up road for those who need to drive. Suggests that Sculpture Trust could fund art work bike parking (maybe like Hobart Artbikes). 

Alastair explained that Howard Markland has funding from WCC to carry out a cycle risk assessment project. This will involve volunteers cycling routes with helmet cams etc to record risk factors. Potential volunteers can meet with Howard 2pm Sunday 11 August, Milk Crate Cafe, 35 Ghuznee St, or contact him (, 027 258 6612).  James says the risk assessment will be tied into an Opus study of 19 major cycle routes, evaluating the level of service.

James spoke about consultation with WCC over roading changes in Johnsonville. Initial plan was just advanced stop boxes, with little other cycle infrastructure. WCC now recognise the problems for biking and will consult on detailed design at the end of the year, or start of 2014. Johnsonville Road is wide enough for bike lanes.

Public transport spine submissions, due 30 September. Choice is now between Bus Rapid Transit, High Priority Bus Lanes, and Light Rail. GWRC favours Bus Rapid Transit. Don says Newtown residents are concerned about disruption to shopping centre. Simon says it is important to look at Appendix B of the report, which shows cross sections, some of which don't allow for bicycles. Bus Rapid Transit lanes can't be used by bikes, bus priority lanes could. Probably not worth advocating for a public bike scheme as part of the transport mix. Worth advocating for: bikes on buses (Bus rapid transit may allow for carrying bikes inside buses); bike parking at stations/end points.

Need to have both individual submissions and a CAW submission (Eleanor coordinating).

Discussion on Green's call for a 1.5m minimum passing distance.

For: Makes people think. Drivers not sure, tempted to slip past. Could aid prosection in the event of an accident.

Against: Hard to enforce  (21 US states have 3 ft passing, but there have been few prosecutions). 1.5m may be too much on narrow roads with slow speeds, but too little on open road at high speeds. Alastair says his informal study shows a high proportion of cars already pass at more than 1.5m.

Conclusion: support campaign, but recognise that a legal minimum is not the only answer: education, and safer roads are important.

Brian reported on his oral submission on the Capital spaces consultation. This addressed bicycle routes in parks etc. Likely to emphasise shorter local routes rather than long routes. Pedestrian conflict was brought up as an issue.

Cameron Smith explained his ethnographic video research on cycling culture for his VUW Anthropology Masters. Changing culture. He is interviewing James and Brian, and filmed part of the CAW meeting. 

Patrick talked about the Island Bay to CBD cycle route, which is WCC's next major cycling project. Pressure is needed to do a good job. A meeting is planned in Island Bay 21 August. 

WCC still have cycling budget for small fixes, eg grates, lips on road edges, etc. Email, or use the fixit web page/app.

Jill is keen to form an action group with other cycling groups to advocate for cycling in local elections. Suggested initiative: a downloadable poster or stencil with slogan "vote bike".

Sarah Free, Greens candidate for Eastern Ward, is planning a Miramar Peninsula ride to raise awareness of cycling needs in Eastern suburbs, 1 September.

Rants & Raves

James's cycle computer failed just before it turned over to a new set of digits.

Matthew has seen earthworks indicating progress on the Tawa cycleway (Simon confirms that it is to be finished by Christmas)

Simon has permission to build a short new track connecting Pirie St with the Mount Victoria track network (primary purpose is so he can take Miro on tagalong bike rides, but will be helpful to commuters too). Will be having lunchtime digs, details on Facebook. 

Alex has been using the Strava ride app. Although oriented to fitness/recreation, has commuting potential.

Jill has been impressed by the promotional material produced by the Cycling Embassy of Denmark.

Alastair is enthusiastic about using folding bikes for cycle touring, after crossing Austria without cycling up hill.

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