Do you want safer and more attractive cycling in New Zealand? Vote cycling.
Whether you are a family with kids, a mountain biker, roadie, frock on bike, commuter or simply love to ride, now is the time to take action.
The General Election is on Saturday 20 September. We need help to make cycling an election issue, so candidates realise that there are a lot of cyclists out there, most of whom vote.
How you can help
Check your enrolment at elections.org.nz
Vote for the party and candidate who best reflects your views on cycling.
Team up with other cycling advocates. Check here to contact people in your area.
You can also find us on Facebook.
Join CAN. There's power in numbers.
Make a donation. Most of what we achieve is done by volunteers but we need your support to run an office, produce Chainlinks, support our website and campaign for cycling.
Check out what parties have to say about cycling. Invite candidates to a meeting and ask about their priorities. Invite them on a ride for a first-hand look at cycling issues.
- What is your transport policy?
- What have you done, and what will you do, to make my town more bike-friendly?
- Do you support safer speed limits, such as 30km/h, in shopping and residential streets?
- Do you support protected cycle lanes on busy routes?
Have your say
Talk to your friends, family and colleagues about why cycling matters.
Write to local papers, post on social media, attend election meetings and keep asking questions.
Greens' cycling policies
Here's the Green Party's response to our request for information regarding cycling policy. This information comes from the offices of Kevin Hague (Sport & Rec spokesperson) and Julie Anne Genter (Transport spokesperson)
1. What are the Greens' key achievements in cycling?
In 2009, the Green Party and the National Government signed a Memorandum of Understanding to work together on Nga Haerenga, the National Cycleway project. Since then, we've added thousands of kilometres of dedicated cycle paths, off-road cycling tracks and cycling routes around the country.
As of March 31, 2014, 1,154 km of new trail has been added to the Great Ride network (with a further 166 km remaining to be built) and 2,665 km of on-road routes have been evaluated and added to the network (with a further 959 km to be added).
In addition, the Green Party has:
Consistently pushed for greater funding for cycling from the transport budget;
Backed Coroner's call for cycling inquiry;
Policed the Police and their failure to prioritise safe driving around cyclists;
Made consistent and strong submissions for better cycling infrastructure on city transport plans;
Convened a cross-party parliamentary cycling group to work collaboratively in the best interests for cyclists;
Pushed for lower urban speed limits;
Participated in events celebrating cycling, like bike-to-work days, Cycle Trail openings, and the Lake Taupo cycle race.
2. What do you see as the issues?
Greater investment is desperately needed in safe, separated cycling infrastructure to encourage more cyclists and protect those people riding already. Giving more people the freedom to ride would also realise huge co-benefits like less congestion in our street, higher air quality in our cities, lower rates of obesity, and lower spending on health.
Cyclists as vulnerable road users need greater legal protection from the law and greater enforcement of the law from the Police.
We also need a suite of smart new initiatives around our schools to ensure kids can get there safely without needing to be dropped off in a car.
3. What are your plans for the next 3 years? And what will these cost?
We will rebalance the transport budget to spend less money on expensive, redundant motorways, and instead make walking, cycling and public transport a priority because that is the best way to get better use out of our existing roading infrastructure. It would cost only a tiny fraction of the National Government's $13 billion spend on motorways to build safe cycling infrastructure throughout our towns and cities.
We have already announced $200 million over four years of new investment in infrastructure so kids can cycle and walk to school safely and to ease congestion on New Zealand's roads. For more information, refer to our Safe to Schools site: https://www.greens.org.nz/safetoschool
The Safe to Schools programme would be matched by the same amount for general walking and cycling facilities.
To put this in perspective, the current Government allocates only $15-20m a year to the walking and cycling activity class in the National Land Transport Fund. We would make it $100m a year, which would be matched by local government, in addition to making "complete streets" a priority in road design.
4. Why should people give you their vote?
We stand for a richer New Zealand - one that has a smart, green economy, protects our natural environment, and ensures everyone can lead good lives in a fair society. Making cycling a priority for transport is a perfect example of a cost-effective green transport solution that will be better for people, better for the environment and better for the economy. We're very passionate about bicycles and the freedom they provide.
National's cycling/Road Safety policy will be released closer to the election, so I can't help you too much at this time.
However, National believes it has made serious improvements in road safety for all road users, including cyclists.
As we approach the election, National will have a mind on improving cycle safety and cycling infrastructure, and we are committed to responding promptly to the Cycle Safety Panel when its recommendations are reported back.
United Future's policy on Cycling, Walking, and Public Transport
- Encourage greater use of cycling and walking as alternative transport methods, through better cycle lanes and walking paths in urban/suburban areas and in the countryside, to discourage the use of cars for shorter trips;
- Encourage Councils to increase off street parking spaces and remove on street parking to make room for better cycling infrastructure;
- Encourage cities and towns to introduce bike share schemes in order to increase use of cycling in inner cities;
- Encourage car parks to be developed on the edge of CBDs, where land is cheaper, accompanied by more cycle lanes, walking paths, low cost buses or trams, and bike share schemes to take people the last mile or two into CBDs;
- Initiate a full review of the effects (negative and positive) and the overall benefit of the compulsory helmet law;
- Support the continued use and upgrading of commuter buses and rail;
- Improve the school bus system to assist de-congesting roads at peak times in the major cities;
- Encourage Walking Buses within a two km radius of every urban school.
Much of this policy is about encouraging central and local government to make concrete moves towards offering better cycling and alternative transport options. Given the economic and social benefits of active transport we expect the costs to be fairly neutral if viewed through a whole of Government lens.
National's response: $100 million for urban cycleways
$100 million for urban cycleways
Prime Minister John Key has today announced $100 million in new funding will be made available over the next four years to accelerate cycleways in urban centres.
Transport Minister Gerry Brownlee says an Urban Cycleway Investment Panel will investigate opportunities to invest in urban cycleways that would expand and improve the cycling network.
Mr Brownlee says National recognises that commuting by bike has health benefits and takes pressure off other transport networks, but says cycleways in our largest centres are fragmented and offer varied levels of service.
"This funding builds on significant investments the government is already making, with projects in Hastings and New Plymouth showcasing how cycling can be a safer, more reliable and realistic transport option.
"Many people cite safety concerns and a lack of infrastructure as reasons for not cycling, so we're going to begin building cycleways to a standard that delivers real incentives for commuters to make a change.
"Building more comprehensive cycling networks will require new infrastructure to connect existing routes and expand the network into wider urban areas.
"And as these connections will be a mix of local roads and State highways, we'll need a strategic approach and collaboration at central and local government level.
"Some councils are well advanced in planning and constructing local cycleways, and we want to ensure we do what we can to complement them and make them capable of being used by the widest number of people possible.
"This funding package also strongly complements other aspects of the government's ambitious transport infrastructure programme, which is designed to ensure people and freight can reach their destinations quickly and safely," Mr Brownlee says.
The Urban Cycleway Investment Panel will include representatives from central government, local government and other organisations. Draft terms of reference for the panel will be presented to Cabinet by 31 October 2014.
and from the new Climate Party
Developing better cycling options, better public transport and in particular a better train system is a win-win-win way forward. Many people will be able to save time and money by leaving their cars at home. We can start reducing the almost $7 billion a year we currently spend on fossil fuel imports - almost half what we earn from our dairy exports. And we can start making serious reductions in our transport-related emissions.
Walking and cycling are cheap, low-infrastructure, healthy, and environmentally-friendly
modes of transport.
For six years, the current government has disregarded people who choose to walk or cycle
and refused to fund walking and cycling infrastructure to make it easier and safer. This
ideologically-driven attitude has seen New Zealand fall behind the rest of the developed
world, where a cycling renaissance is taking place.
The current government's new commitment of $100 million over four years is good but too
little and too late, and it isn't a permanent boost from within the National Land Transport
Relatively small investments, in the scale of the transport budget, could give our cities worldclass
cycling infrastructure as seen through much of Europe. Safe, grade-separated
cycleways give more people the choice to cycle, especially as petrol becomes more
expensive. That helps to decongest the roads, save the country money on oil imports, clean
up our air, and reduce our climate impact.
Ensure that future roading projects will make provision for cycling, for example by
bikeway design alongside roads or with separate bikeway networks.
Make cycle and pedestrian safety a priority and ensure that legislation, the road code
and by-laws are made sufficient to protect all road users.
Introduce new safety zones across suburbs and towns during school commuting
hours, to help facilitate safe cycling and walking to and from school.
Increase walking and cycling investment significantly.
which prompted this response
Greens to build three times more cycleways than National
Greens to build three times more cycleways than National
news release from Russel Norman MP on Friday, September 12, 2014 - 09:59
"The Green Party will build three times the length of safe, separated cycleways than National over the next three years," said Green Party Co-leader Dr Russel Norman today.
Dr Russel Norman joined Wellington Mayor Celia Wade-Brown to cycle the route of one of the new, planned cycleways connecting Island Bay to Wellington's city centre.
"We've been waiting too long for National to build safe, separated cycleways to ensure New Zealanders can cycle safely around our towns and cities," Dr Norman said.
"The Green Party's investment of $300 million over three years will ensure that the most urgently needed cycleways in our cities are built.
"National's proposed $100 million commitment is a small fraction of what is actually needed to do the job properly.
"People living in places like Island Bay are within easy cycling distance to downtown but are discouraged by the complete lack of a safe route.
"Wellington, like every other major town or city in the country, has a deficit of safe, separated cycleways and a huge pent-up demand to use them.
"For example, a safe cycling route between Wellington and Lower Hutt - the route top safety cop Steve Fitzgerald was killed on - has languished for years from a lack of funding. The Green Party would spend $47 million in Wellington alone to get this and other routes like the Great Harbour Way constructed connecting Wellington all the way around the coastline to Eastbourne safely.
"We are missing a huge opportunity for cycling to be a serious, cost effective transport option for short trips. The Green's investment will make cycling a realistic and enjoyable alternative for many commuters.
"More than half of peak hour trips in New Zealand are less than five kilometres - a distance that can be easily cycled by many of us.
"Surveys show many New Zealanders want to cycle more, but they don't feel safe. Our plan will increase cycle safety and free up our roads for those who need to drive.
"And the health benefits alone are huge, outweighing the construction costs by a factor of 24."
Please see our Green Transport Plan and plan to Fast-track Wellington.
There's a useful summary of
There's a useful summary of parties policies on the Cycling in Christchurch Blog