The Council will deliver $65 million of its $156 million Major Cycle Routes network over the next three years, with a local investment of $23.5 million.
People can now ride on the first new section of cycleway build as part of the Major Cycle Routes programme.
The new cycleway runs alongside Matai Street East and includes a new crossing with traffic lights to get people safely over Deans Avenue and into Hagley Park where they can continue on to the Central City. The part through North Hagley Park to the central city will soon be upgraded to Major Cycle Route standard.
The Matai Street East cycleway was opened by Transport Minister Simon Bridges.
Phil Clearwater, the Council's transport spokesman desribed the Matai Street East section as a critical part of the Uni-Cycle route which, when finished in 2017 is expected to attract about 1,800 users a day.
"There are a number of destinations in the area, including Christchurch Boys' and Girls' high schools, Deans Bush and Riccarton House where weekend markets are popular, as well as Mona vale and of course Hagley Park. People will be able to use the route to commute to work, school or enjoy a leisurely bike ride to local parks, the market, shops and cafes. "
Uni-Cycle Route factsheet [PDF 1.5MB]
Many projects are being funded as part of the Urban Cycleways Programme, comprising shared investment from the Urban Cycleways Fund, the National Land Transport Fund and local councils. This enables key, high-value urban cycling projects to get underway around the country over the next three years, while improving cycle safety and supporting more connected cycle networks.
The funding boost means the Council will deliver $65 million of the $156 million programme over the next three years for a local investment of $23.5 million.
In June 2015, Transport Minister Simon Bridges announced the Urban Cycleways Fund would contribute $19.04 million over three years. There is potential for a further $22.57 million from the National Land Transport Fund.
Urban Cycleways Programme
About the Major Cycle Routes network
The Council is building 13 major cycle routes that will encourage the large group of people who think they would cycle, or cycle more, if it was safer. To achieve this means making some significant changes to the way we prioritise the transport network in favour of cycling on these routes.
In some locations this will result in cyclists having priority over cars at intersections and reduce on-street parking. The network is now expected to cost about $156 million to build based on 2015 values.
Major Cycle Routes network construction priority map [PDF 3.11MB]
The benefits of the network will total more than $1.2 billion over 40 years, according to findings by transport planning company Quality Transport Planning (QTP). They will be passed on to the whole community and not just people who ride, the independent analysis finds.
Quality Transport Planning report: Christchurch Major Cycleway Routes Updated Funding Assessment February 2015 [PDF 15.59MB]
Among the benefits that were allocated a monetary value in the QTP report were the impacts on health and well-being, pollution, road congestion and crash rates.
The Council developed a set of criteria to rank the routes to determine which ones should be built first. Results were analysed and the 13 routes were split into three groups.
The first four routes to be built are:
The Council adopted names for all 13 routes along with bilingual options in Te Reo Māori. The names were suggested during a public contest and a vote was held to find the finalists.
View the route names and alternatives [PDF 7019KB] in Te Reo Māori.
Improving the safety and accessibility for cyclists was a strong theme for recovery to emerge from the Share an Idea discussion in 2011. People said they wanted the Council to invest in cycle paths to provide more choices and safer routes for people travelling to work, study or play.
The Council adopted the Christchurch Transport Strategic Plan in 2012. It set out a 30-year vision for transport in the city including a range of transport options to meet the needs of the community. It proposed a network of 13 cycleways [PDF 1.66MB]to provide safe, convenient connections between the Central City, suburbs, business and shopping zones as well as popular recreational areas. Funding for the cycleways was confirmed in the Christchurch City Three Year Plan 2013-16. To help determine the look, feel and function of the cycleways, Cycle Design Guidelines [PDF 3.46MB] were developed. The Council adopted the Guidelines in April 2013. These guidelines have been used as the basis for the development of detailed design requirements. There will be some locations where the guidelines are not able to be strictly adered to but the safety requirements remain non-negotiable requirements.
Christchurch Transport Strategic Plan 2012-2042 [PDF 4.83MB]
Christchurch Cycle Design Guidelines 2013 [PDF 3.46MB]