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[Page updated December 17th with Ideas for your submission below]

You've got until this Friday December 20th to have your say on Auckland Transport's proposed improvements for Pt Chev.

This page describes our understanding of and response to AT's proposed improvements (view their project page here), and is broken into two sections:

  1. Ideas for your submission. These are the things we like about the proposal, and the things we think could be improved. In a hurry? Feel free to use any of it that resonates with you when you complete your feedback. We've included a link to AT's feedback form at the end of the section.
  2. A deeper dive. A longer piece (from last month) describing how we reckon the project is a major step towards making Pt Chev's streets safer, for not just everyone who bikes, but for people walking, jogging, scooting, and driving as well.

Read on, and if you want to send us a question use the link at the bottom of the page.

Ideas for your submission

AT's feedback form (link at the bottom of this section) is broken into seven questions. We've broken down our thoughts by the same. Feel free to use any that resonate with you.

Pt Chev Road

Impression of Pt Chev Road after the proposed changes (from AT project page).

1. What do you like about the proposed changes to Pt Chev Road?

  • Safer for biking. The proposed safe and separate bikeway will give people who ride/ scoot/ travel in mobility scooters an option besides the footpath or the “door zone” between parked cars and moving traffic. We reckon this will help to keep people safe as they go about local trips, to the shops, schools, and sports.
  • Safer for walking. We like the new raised and signalised crossings, and the raised tables over the side streets – safe walking is so important, and these will be great for kids, Selwyn Villagers, and people catching the bus! With more and better crossings, it’ll be easier to walk around the place and get from one side of Pt Chev to the other.
  • More efficient buses. We like the proposal for a peak-hour bus lane, to free up buses full of people.
  • Great for trees. We love that the design works around and preserves the Pt Chev Road pohutukawa, and adds even more.
  • Focus on kids. We love the options the design provides for kids, who don’t usually get a voice in consultations but will have to live with the outcome the longest. The neighbourhood has an increasing proportion of kids who bike, walk, and scoot to school, mostly riding on footpaths to be safe. Over half of the primary school kids don’t arrive by car, and fully 25% of kids at the local intermediate get there independently by bike – while 80% of Western Springs College students walk, bike or bus to school.
  • Better protection from driveways. The proposed design provides for distance separation between property fences and the space where children will cycle. This provides better visibility for drivers, parents, and kids - and so reduces the risk of kids being hit by cars coming out of driveways. We have had 5 kids hit by cars coming out of driveways in 2019 and it has to stop. This route on Pt Chev Road will provide a place for kids and their families to bike partway to school, and to local cafes and shops much more safely.
  • Safer (possible!) crossing at Pt Chev/Meola. We support the traffic signals at Pt Chevalier / Meola – and ask for them to be on a raised table (to slow down red-light runners) and with wider paths around the edges for walking and biking. This intersection is currently almost impossible to cross with young children or for people on mobility scooters; again, the proposed design gives options for all ages and modes. We’d also like to see AT fix the ‘missing leg’ for pedestrians.
  • Safer connection to the Northwestern cycleway. We like the connection this provides to the Northwestern cycleway. Currently cyclists along Pt Chev Road need to compete with cars, buses, and parked cars before they can reach the safety of the NW cycleway. This proposal provides a far safer connection, and we think will increase the number of people choosing to commute by bike.

2. What would you do to improve the design?

  • Traffic monitoring on the 'bird streets'. It’s unclear whether the proposal will lead to more drivers choosing to ‘rat-run’ through the bird streets than already do. It seems possible, but then dozens and dozens of cars are already content with being backed up at the Pt Chev/Meola Road intersection as it is - so it might also be possible that the traffic lights would improve the flow of traffic here. We think this uncertainty should be alleviated by having continuous traffic monitoring put in place for a two-year period before/during/after construction works. That would help identify any unexpected issues that need addressing, and give AT an evidence base to inform future projects. The data from this monitoring must be available to all residents.
  • Extend to Pt Chev primary. The cycleway shouldn’t stop at Meola. It should go to the Primary School to give kids a protected route. We are engaging with the Local Board on this possible extension and expect AT to support this.
  • Bike parking. There currently isn’t any. There are already problems with lack of bike parking at the shops and cafes on Pt Chev Road; this streetscape proposal will encourage more people to bike there and so good bike parking is a must. This should extend to bike parks near bus stops, as locals already bike-and-ride, and with safer routes, more people are sure to join them.
  • Trees at bus stops. Bus stops are one of the only places people linger, and it can get very hot in summer. Please consider planting for shade at these locations.
  • Drop off parking for local businesses on Walker Road. The businesses around Walker Road (wine shop, pizza shop, 3 x cafes) all require drop offs by supplier cars, vans and trucks. We think a short-stay parking spot at the end of Walker Road for provide a location for use when the two car parks outside the pizza shop are occupied.

Meola Road

Impression of Meola Road after the proposed changes (from AT project page).

3. What do you like about the proposed changes to Meola Road?

  • Safe movement for all. Like the Pt Chev Road changes, these changes provide safer movement for people of all ages and on all modes.
  • Safe biking to football. We like the opportunity this creates for young kids and their families to bike to football in winter. Traffic on early Saturday mornings around the football ground is chaotic and dangerous. In one month last winter we ran a program that saw 450 trips switched from cars to bikes, and the #1 thing people said would keep them biking to football was a protected cycleway. We think this is going to be a game-changer... 
  • Connection to neighbouring suburbs. We like the connection the Meola Road cycleway will provide to neighbouring suburbs, e.g., Westmere. And, ultimately, with the wider cycleway network through Herne Bay to eventually join up with Skypath over the Harbour Bridge.
  • Provides an alternative route to the dangerous footpath on the bridge. We like that kids (or anyone, really) will no longer have to walk/bike that incredibly skinny stretch of footpath over the bridge to get from Pt Chev to the football club (and beyond). There is absolutely no margin for error on this path currently, and we know of many families who will not use it with young kids. Providing a continuous path on the northern side of Meola Road is a dramatic improvement in safe movement.

4. What would you do to improve the design?

  • Raised crossings. We want to see raised crossings for the entrances of the Bird Streets on the south side of Meola Road, on all of them, especially Moa Road which is a key desire line for children heading to and from local schools.
  • Bike parking. We ask for more bike parking as part of the plan: especially at shops and bus stops. The sports fields and MOTAT/zoo precinct will need dedicated bike parking, too.
  • Barrier on the bridge. While there is now a continuous path from Pt Chev to the football club on the northern side of Meola Road, the southern side retains the skinny footpath over the bridge. This needs a barrier between the footpath and traffic lane to minimise risk of child/pedestrian incidents.
  • Treatment to the driveways of MOTAT and Seddon Fields. Pedestrians and cyclists already cross these driveways in large numbers in the weekends, and typically stop for cars. Some kind of treatment - at a minimum markings and signage - needs to make it clear that cars should give way to pedestrians and cyclists.

Garnet Road

5. What do you like about the proposed changes to Garnet Road?

  • Safer access to Westmere shops. The short section of protected cycleway bridges the gap from the roundabout to the shops, and while the continuous route to the city is yet to come, this section will enable people to safely bike to the cafes, dairies, doctor’s office, and specialty food shops.

6. What would you do to improve the design?

  • Raised crossing. We want to see a raised crossing for the entrance of Faulder Road off Garnet Road.
  • Safer crossing on the north leg of the roundabout. There’s a raised crossing missing on this leg. Please make this safer for pedestrians. 
  • Fill the gap. While it’s currently out of scope, ideally this section would continue across Oban Road, which has a very wide entrance with corners designed for fast vehicle turns, and is dangerous for people walking and biking, especially with children. Connecting people safely to the shops should be a priority.


7. Are there any other comments you would like to make ?

  • Business continuity. Our local shops are a big part of the community and we want to see that they are supported through the process. We’ve run two campaigns in the last year that gave out 600 vouchers for people on bikes to use at local shops. We’ve got some great ideas on how to support business continuity through this period of change and want AT to support us in that.
  • A more equitable mix. We support the repurposing of car parking and the painted median where necessary to make the project safe and functional for all ages and all kinds of travel. We’ve heard from some in our community that they think the proposed changes will inconvenience drivers. However, the young and old people in our community who want to walk, bike, scoot are not only already inconvenienced - they are actively put at risk. We think the proposed design provides for a more equitable sharing of limited space across all different modes of transport.
  • More options for Selwyn Village residents. We reckon the proposed changes are going to open up Pt Chev to more Selwyn Village residents - via mobility scooters, or the Cycling Without Age “Trishaw” that offers the hundreds of retired Selwyn Village residents a chance to get pedalled around the neighbourhood.
  • Tree replacement. We support the replanting plan on Meola Road’s south side where we understand AT proposes to remove some of the currently unhealthy trees and replace them with native trees more appropriate for the space and area available, are more attractive to native bird species, and which "create the safest possible outcome for the community by....provid[ing] better road widths for motorists and a more consistent cycleway width for people on bikes."
  • Release pent up demand for biking. We think there’s heaps of people willing to hop on a bike when it’s made easy and safe to do so, and masses of pent-up demand for a more bikeable, walkable, scootable ‘burb. The 450 trips that were switched from car to bike over four weeks at Seddon Fields last winter proved that point. So, we think this proposal could significantly increase numbers of people doing short trips by bike - helping open up the roads for those who need to drive.
  • Thank you! Thank you for the opportunity to provide feedback on the proposed improvements. We look forward to continuing the conversation.
Ready to make a submission?
You only have until this Friday December 20th, do it now...

2. A deeper dive: a vision for Pt Chev

In short, we’re really enthused about this project. It’s a major step towards making Pt Chev’s streets safer, for not just everyone who bikes, but for people walking, jogging, scooting, and driving as well. 

With changes to things we’re used to, like the streets we live on and use every day, it’s easy to instantly zoom in on the details, see proposed changes through the lenses of our current habits, and find lots of things to question and debate. Those will be important observations and are a good reason to take part in the consultation.

Imagine a neighbourhood where, if you’re heading to school, shops, sports, the beach, or a mate’s house, it makes just as much sense to walk or bike or hop on a bus, as to jump in your car and drive 5 minutes.

Or, you can start at the other end: with the wider, longterm vision of what’s possible. Imagine a neighbourhood where, if you’re heading to school, shops, sports, the beach, or a mate’s house, it makes just as much sense to walk or bike or hop on a bus, as to jump in your car and drive 5 minutes.

A suburb that makes it not just easy but attractive to “get your steps in”, and to zip around the neighbourhood in ways that are healthier for the climate as well as for ourselves. One where anybody can bike or bus to the city in half an hour. One where you could let go of your child’s hand, send them off to the dairy by themselves, let them get to school under their own steam.

That could be Pt Chev. And for some of us, it already is: we love seeing bikes outside dairies and cafes, groups of people and dogs out for a cafe stroll, kids walking and scooting around. We’d also love to see tangible changes to our busy roads and sketchy intersections so that more people feel able to do that, freely and without stress. 

In particular, we love the proposed safe and separate bikeways on our busy arterials, which would give people who ride/ scoot/ travel in mobility scooters an option besides the footpath or the “door zone” between parked cars and moving traffic.  We love the fact there will be more and better crossings, so it’ll be easier to walk around the place and get from one side of the Chev to the other. We like the proposal for a peak-hour bus lane, to free up buses full of people. We love that the design works around the Pt Chev Road pohutukawa, and adds another six.

Impression of Pt Chev Road after the proposed changes (from AT project page).

At the same time, like many of you, we’re thinking about the effects of the changes, how our fave local shops might deal with construction, and how customers in cars will respond to changes in where they can park. We can also see lots of our neighbours talking about things that are already happening – like speeding, red-light running, rat-running through the back streets, and the rise in through-traffic trying to avoid the motorway. It’s good to see these issues up for discussion.

We reckon it’s the start of a really timely discussion for our ‘hood, about how we live now, how we get around and what Pt Chev feels like, whether you’re young or old, behind the wheel of a car or walking to school. 

Can this design fix all of this? Not overnight - but we reckon it’s the start of a really timely discussion for our ‘hood, about how we live now, how we get around and what Pt Chev feels like, whether you’re young or old, behind the wheel of a car or walking to school.  

Luckily, the consultation is all about surfacing any issues. So we encourage you to read up on it, have a look at the plans, read different takes, and talk to each other and your neighbours and your kids.

You can support the plan in principle, while still having heaps of questions and suggestions. That’s where we’re at, even though some of us have been involved the community liaison group that AT spoke to over several months! But we’re convinced this plan is on the right track and that together we can help make it even better. 

And the  funny thing is that none of us was consulted on the situation we have now. It grew up around us, especially over the last 20-30 years. And we know it’s unsustainable: business as usual is no longer an option. So this is a chance to be more intentional about the next 20-30 years – an opportunity to discover how different things could be.  

What’s the Pt Chev streetscape project?

It’s an Auckland Transport design to create safe, continuous bike paths: on Pt Chevalier Road as far as Meola Road, and along Meola Road to Westmere. The goal is better all-ages travel options for locals, and it’s also part of a wider plan to complete a network of safe bike routes connecting through the inner west neighbourhoods, along Great North Road to Karangahape Road and into town, and through Herne Bay to eventually join up with Skypath over the Harbour Bridge.

It’s not just about bike lanes, either - thanks to previous community feedback, this has evolved into a full streetscape project that includes safer crossings, both at side streets, across the main roads; safer intersections; more greenery; and more welcoming footpaths that are buffered from traffic.

Impression of Meola Road after the proposed changes (from AT project page).

What’s in it for Pt Chev?

One of the things we all love about living in Pt Chev is how handy it is. Within cooee, we have the zoo and MOTAT, the beach, an amazing variety of parks, playgrounds and sportsfields, handy shops, great schools. You can walk from one end to another in about half an hour, and a bike or scooter makes that even easier.

It’s a wonderful place to raise a family, and kids can roam the neighbourhood – well, in theory. In practice, there’s heavy through-traffic along our main streets, so lots of parents don’t feel safe letting their kids walk or bike alone, and the Meola/ Pt Chev intersection is a bit of a ‘mare.

And for many of us in this group, it comes down to this: our kids deserve safer streets to walk and bike on and grow up alongside. It’s really that simple.

From AT project page.

Has anyone been knocked off their bike on these roads, though? 

Yes. Although, we have to ask, should that matter? We shouldn’t need to ‘buy’ safer streets one injury or death at a time! And the safest trip is the one you never make - lots of people wind up driving everywhere because the streets feel too hostile for themselves or their family members to walk or bike instead.

The crash data since 2000 features some hair-raising examples of serious injuries on Pt Chev and Meola Roads, involving people driving, walking, biking. And the police stats are just the tip of the iceberg. Only something like one in five serious bike crashes are reported, and almost everyone who rides a bike in the neighbourhood would be able to report a near hit or a scary close pass. Sadly, the footpath isn’t much safer – this year alone, five local children (that we know of) have been hit by cars coming out of driveways.

By contrast, a 13 year international study of a dozen cities found that adding separated bike lanes to streets made them safer for everyone. Not just people on bikes: everyone, drivers and passengers included.

There’s already a cycleway along SH16 into town, yes?

Yes: the Northwestern Cycleway, which hundreds of people use every day to get to and from the city and between neighbourhoods along the way, as well as for weekend adventures. We know it’s not just used by commuters, but also by kids walking and riding to Pasadena and Western Springs College.

The Northwestern doesn’t just connect the west to the central city: it links via off-road routes to Avondale, Mt Roskill, Onehunga – and, via a project just under way, to New Lynn. In 2020 the narrow section through Kingsland will be widened and separated to make it safer for school traffic and people walking; and before Christmas, a new extension opens all the way to Westgate.

With every new connection, more and more people use the cycleway: there are now twice as many trips per day as four years ago – 1300 a day at the height of summer! That’s a lot of people who could be persuaded to stop in Pt Chev – and ridership is growing by around 25% a year. It’s a treasure in our backyard, and a definite bike magnet.

So why do we need bike paths on Pt Chev’s main roads?

It’s partly so people can get to and from that wider network – but just as importantly, it’s to keep people safe as they go about local trips, to the shops, schools, and sports. And there are already a lot of locals who ride.

At the 2013 census, Pt Chev (west and east) had one of the highest rates of people biking to work and study. Our local schools already have some of the highest walking, biking and scooting rates of schools across the city. And when the streetscape project was first consulted on in 2017, a bike counter was installed on Pt Chev Road, which showed there were around 400 trips a day. (Can you picture all those people in cars, squeezing into traffic alongside everyone who’s already driving?)

And it’s about building for future growth, too. Research shows lots of Aucklanders are keen to ride more, but find traffic intimidating. Building safe bike paths allows more people, young and old, to give it a go. At the moment, in Pt Chev, your choice is to bike on the footpath – which lots of people do – or to ride in the “door zone”, between parked cars and passing traffic. That’s not really a fair or comfortable choice for anyone involved. Safer bike paths will get bikes off the footpath, and more people will feel comfortable riding.

Of course it’s not about expecting everyone to suddenly jump on a bike; it’s simply about making it a safe option. With Pt Chev’s population on the rise, and traffic apparently up by 18% in the two years since the Waterview tunnel opened, we really have to think more efficiently about how to move people, not just cars, through our neighbourhood. (For example, one bus can hold 50 passengers. If you put 50 people in a car each, at the usual distance from each other, they’d stretch approximately from the Pt Chev shops to Wakatipu St. Coincidentally that’s also about the distance the proposed bus lane would extend).

We know there’s heaps of latent potential out there to free up space on our streets for more efficient travel. Our recent Bike to Football initiative proved that - over just four weeks in the middle of winter, working with just the youngest players on a Saturday morning, we drew 130+ people on bikes each session - taking dozens of cars off the road, freeing up space for those who had no choice but to drive, and showing families what’s possible. The one thing people most frequently told us? “Meola Road needs safe bike lanes so we could do this more often.”

Where can I find more information?

When can I meet the Auckland Transport team to ask them questions?

Public drop-in sessions will be held at the Point Chevalier Library at the following times:

  • Saturday 30 November, 10am – midday
  • Thursday 5 December, 4pm – 6pm
  • Tuesday 10 December, 4pm – 6pm

These are a good opportunity to meet the AT project team and ask any questions you might have.

Where do I make my submission?

Ready to make your submission? Do so here.


Let us know your thoughts and questions using the link below.

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