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Thank you, but we need more cycle ways

Cycle power – recreational riders gather to celebrate and call for more safe trails. Photo: Bruce Barnard.

Nearly a hundred Tauranga recreational cyclists turned out en masse this week to say thank you to the NZTA.

They gathered at Ila Park on a new commuter and recreational link, a shared cycle way and boardwalk hugging SH29A from the new Poike Road overbridge to the Hairini roundabout. It’s due to be completed this month.

“A superb facility, a much needed boardwalk and cycle way. And at absolutely no cost to the ratepayer,” says grateful Chris Ingram of the Wednesday Sulphur Point cycling group.

“The new shared cycle way links the cycling and pedestrian networks in Hairini and the Maungatapu underpass,” says the NZTA’s projects team manager, John McCarthy. “It provides a link to Toi Ohomai Institute of Technology and the University of Waikato’s Windermere campuses.”

The gathering of cyclists wasn’t just a thank you. “It was also to impress on the NZTA our urgent need for more safe commuting trails, especially along state highways and toll roads,” says Chris. Essential, he says, is the link to connect Papamoa to the Kaituna Bridge trail.

“Cycling is a popular and rapidly growing activity in Tauranga and so there are many cyclists and walkers hungry for more safe linked trails.”

He says the cyclists would also like to thank Tauranga City Council for the cycle ways, bridges and signs constructed in the past year; for its surveys and planning. However, he urged more funding “to take cars off our congested roads and for our health and well-being.”

NZTA is working with the council as it develops its Cycle Action Plan. The plan will guide the next stages of the cycle network investment in Tauranga. And it’s also working with the Western Bay of Plenty District Council and co-investing in the Omokoroa to Tauranga cycleway.

John says NZTA is keen to see more walking and cycling projects in the city to provide people with transport choice, to support the creation of livable cities, to reduce emissions and to improve public health outcomes.

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Sorry Chris Ingram

Posted on 04-05-2018 19:03 | By Accountable

But the money used to pay for anything to do with cycling in Tauranga or anywhere else for that matter is from revenue collected from Fuel Excise Duty (FED), Road User Charges (RUC), Vehicle and Driver Registration and Licensing, state highway property disposal and leasing and road tolling is credited to the NLTF. These funds are used to pay for investment in land transport activities under the NLTP. You and your small group of cyclists should be thanking the ratepayer as well as the motorist for your expensive bit of pleasure. Being used by a small minority of people is an absolute waste of the funders money and it would be far better to use it on roading and the consequent savior of more lives. Your group should keep these selfish comments of wanting more cycle ways to yourselves and be publicly appreciative of the motorist for their contribution.

How about safe cycling for kids getting to and from school?

Posted on 04-05-2018 15:55 | By Murray.Guy

Personally I’d prioritize ’safe cycling options’ for our children who could be and should be cycling to and from school. 2000 students, I read recently, a day leave Welcome Bay for Intermediate and High Schools, yet few can safety cycle. Surely it makes sense to identify those transport corridors most used for commuters (schools and workers) and start where we get the ’best bang for the buck’! Ratepayers or Taxpayers, we are one in the same and do all the paying.