Safe space is urgently needed for walking and cycling, say advocates

News release from Cycle Wellington

Transport advocates have today called on Wellington City Council to enact urgent measures to support safe walking and cycling and social distancing during the Covid-19 pandemic.

Wellington Council needs to respond to public health directives on physical distancing in busy areas for people who are walking and cycling,” said Cycle Wellington spokesperson, Patrick Morgan.

"We've seen many people making essential or recreation trips are choosing to walk and ride bikes because streets are quiet, but as motor vehicle traffic increases at alert level 3, physical distancing must still be practiced. Using road space to distance from other people will become more hazardous," he said.

Auckland will complete 17 km of pop up bike lanes by tomorrow (Tuesday 28 April). In Wellington, that number is zero.”

People deserve protection. Why are we waiting?”

Let's start by urgently building a protected bike route for 6 km from Thorndon Quay to Wellington hospital in Newtown.“

The route would connect Thorndon Quay, Bunny St, Customhouse and Jervois Quays, Cable St, Wakefield St, Kent and Cambridge Terraces, Adelaide Rd and Riddiford St.

This would take pressure off the waterfront, giving pedestrians much needed safe space for physical distancing.

"Some people will avoid public transport. With more people driving to work and freight services returning to normal it is expected that roads will be busier than at alert level 4. It makes sense to give people safe space."

The Government will pay for up 90 percent of the costs, through its Innovating Streets programme.

Release Date: 
Monday, 27 April, 2020