Safe cycling framework for the Capital

24 June 2015

Work to build a series of new safe cycling routes across the Capital is a significant step closer following today’s meeting of the Wellington City Council.

The Council voted unanimously to adopt the Wellington Cycling Framework, which prioritises the construction of cycleways across the Capital City over the next 10 years. Some $58 million has been budgeted for the work.

“This really is an exciting day for the future of the city and the region. The number of people cycling into and around the city has been soaring in recent years and many more people would like to ride,” says Mayor Celia Wade-Brown.

“Modern, progressive cities provide safe cycling infrastructure. Over three quarters of respondents to a recent survey said they would cycle more if it were safer “

“Cycleways are transforming how people move around cities globally. Health, independence, affordability, emissions reduction combine with the sheer joy of cycling as very good reasons for change.”

Cr Andy Foster, Chair of the Council’s Transport and Urban Development Committee, seconded today’s recommendation that the Framework be adopted. He told the meeting that cyclist numbers have more than doubled in the city in the past five years – and there’s been 21 percent growth in the past year alone.

“This Framework is about providing people with real choices about how they can get around the city safely – and this includes safe cycling. We want to allow children and older people to get around on bikes if they want to. We know that many people want to cycle but lack of safe cycleways currently prevents them exercising that freedom.”

Mayor Wade-Brown says the Council aims to start talking to the community in the next few months on how the routes could work – “and we want to encourage as greater engagement in this as possible.”

Eight Councillors – Crs Andy Foster, Simon Woolf, Sarah Free, Mark Peck, Nicola Young, David Lee, Justin Lester and Malcolm Sparrow – will sit on a working party to determine which routes are to be looked at in greater detail for cycling and the order in which they will be addressed.

The working party is expected to report back to the Transport and Urban Development Committee in September.