Transport and roading problems

Dunedin hasn’t just been having problems with hospital food, there are ongoing problems with transport and roading.

The city’s transport group manager has just resigned, five months after replacing the previous manager who resigned while on holiday amidst controversy over a botched cycleway project that had to be redone at considerable expense.

This picture of mayor Dave Cull was posted on Facebook yesterday:

ODT: Second manager departs

The Dunedin City Council has lost its second transport group manager in less than six months.

Ian McCabe has resigned, citing personal reasons, just five months after replacing Gene Ollerenshaw in the role in November last year.

Staff in the council’s transport department have been in the spotlight over mud-tank maintenance failings, which followed the botched roll-out of South Dunedin cycleways.

An election is coming up with current mayor Dave Cull standing again, but he must be under pressure. This was posted on Facebook in the weekend:

CullCycling

Mud tank maintenance (or rather, the lack of maintenance) has been a big issue since the South Dunedin floods last year.

But cycle lanes promoted by a green leaning council are an ongoing issue and have been of great annoyance to many people.

Some cycleways have been popular, like the peninsula paths on widened roads and the west harbour walkway/cycleway from the city to St Leonards is well used, to a large extent by recreational users.

Botched South Dunedin cycleway project that blew up when it was discovered fire engines were hampered by redesigned intersections.

But cycle paths tacked on to central city streets have also been very contentious. Car parks on both sides of Anzac Avenue were converted into cycleways that are hardly used – I use Anzac Avenue almost daily and while cyclists can be spotted occasionally they are rare.

More contentious is the proposal to convert car parks along both one way streets through the city (state highway 1) into cycleways. Safety of cyclists is important, but so is the needs of motorists.

The green council seems to think that if better cycleways are provided the city’s commuters will suddenly start biking to work. Some of them may, some of the time.

But the weather in Dunedin isn’t always perfect for cycling, and there are days, especially during the winter, where the bike lanes will be virtually empty (already that’s true of many days) and the traffic will clog up more than ever.

Making the centre city more cycle friendly is actually likely to be counter-productive to green ideals – people are more likely to drive their cars to retail options outside the CBD that still provide good parking.

I hope the city council manages to recruit a new transport manager that understands all of this.

 

Leave a comment

9 Comments

  1. Kevin

     /  2nd May 2016

    I wouldn’t mind cycle lanes so much if they were compulsory. As it is, the cyclist lobby demands them and then the stupid douchebag Mamils refuse to use them (apparently cycle lanes are only for amateurs and casual cyclists).

    Oh, and while we’re at it, every vehicle that uses the road should be registered and have some kind of registration plate, including bicycles.

    Reply
    • Kitty Catkin

       /  2nd May 2016

      Well, yes-one sees the Mamils and Mawils riding three abreast, refusing to move. I once came around a corner and the car nearly went into two cyclists riding right in the middle of the road. One of the group turned, glared at us and deliberately went up to make it three abreast.

      Reply
  2. Patzcuaro

     /  2nd May 2016

    For real road and transport problems try Auckland week days during the school term!

    Reply
  3. Brown

     /  2nd May 2016

    ”… green ideals …”

    Here’s the problem in two words. I hate cycleways as they are always clogged up with rubbish, broken glass, stones and hippies with tassles on their handlebars. Give me the edge of the road – a metre is plenty, and I’m happy to take my chances with the traffic.

    Reply
    • Kevin

       /  2nd May 2016

      Great. So you’d be happy if we got rid of cycle lanes. Awesome!

      Reply
  4. Alan Wilkinson

     /  2nd May 2016

    Meanwhile back in the real world it took me an hour to get from Otahuhu to Greenlane on Friday at 4:30 pm. The cost of long neglected government monopoly infrastructure is huge.

    Reply
    • Patzcuaro

       /  2nd May 2016

      I agree, the solution requires either tolling (public or private) or higher taxes to pay for it.

      Reply
    • Conspiratoor

       /  2nd May 2016

      You were lucky Al. The G4 Beijing Hong Kong expressway is coming to a place near you. Would post a pic but I’m on a phone

      Reply
  5. Conspiratoor

     /  2nd May 2016

    ‘The weather in Dunedin isn’t always perfect for cycling’.

    Eh?

    Reply

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