News | 9 July 2018

Helping to make biking in the city easier

Work is under way, or about to begin, on a series of central city improvements that will help make getting about by bike a little easier.

Example of new bike racks
Example of new bike racks

These include improved connections to the waterfront in several locations, new covered parking for bikes in Grey Street, an extension to the existing bike lane along Featherston Street, and a new lane up Rugby Street between Adelaide Road and Tasman Street.

The improvements – which were among the projects approved by Councillors last year – are consistent with other improvements to cycling facilities being considered as part of the Let’s Get Wellington Moving project.

From today (9 July), the motorbike parking on Grey Street will move just around the corner onto Featherston Street. In its place, a glass bus stop-style shelter that will house a new two-tier Dutch bike rack will be constructed adjacent to the public toilets and showers.

The rack has a gas-assisted mechanism, which will make it easy for people to lift bikes into position.

Wellington City Council’s Portfolio Leader for Walking, Cycling and Public Transport Councillor Sarah Free says the space-saving design will provide parking for 60 bikes in a space equivalent to two car parking spaces.

“Covered public bike parking is common in overseas cities, but a new thing here,” she says. “We’ll be monitoring use over time, and depending on demand, may look to put in more in other locations.”

Elsewhere in the central city, work is under way to improve popular waterfront crossings so they can more safely accommodate and cater for people on foot and bikes.

This includes installing a hold rail, ramp and call button on the waterfront near Tory Street which will activate a brief light phase so people on bikes can more easily get across Cable Street.

It also involves widening the crossing that goes from the Michael Fowler Centre carpark to the Wharewaka and St John’s building to provide dedicated space for people on foot and bikes.

There will be bike and pedestrian cross-now lights in this location, as well as hold rails for people on bikes, and separate ramps with tactile pavers – green to mark the bike crossing, and yellow for pedestrians. An additional path will be developed through the central traffic island so pedestrians and bike riders have their own space.

A new ramp and light phase for bikes, which can be activated when required, will also be put in to make getting across Jervois Quay from Frank Kitts Park to Willeston Street safer and easier.

In Rugby Street, changes are being made to a traffic island to create space for a new bike lane between Adelaide Road and Tasman Street. A raised rubber lane divider will be used to clearly define and separate the new uphill lane from traffic.

Kerb changes have also recently been made on part of Featherston Street, which allows the existing bike lane that goes as far as Bunny Street at the moment, to be extended another two blocks towards the city as far as Ballance Street.

The new facilities will all be complete within the next few months.

Towards the end of the year, a short section of bike path will be installed in Post Office Square so people can ride from Customhouse Quay to Jervois Quay and Queens Wharf. The path will be beside the road on a small section of the paved area, and clearly defined.