The Grafton Gully cycleway opened yesterday. My post yesterday afternoon covered the opening ceremony and this post is about the cycleway itself.

Moving from South to North the project starts at Upper Queen St before winding it’s way down beside the motorway to Grafton Rd where it meets the section completed last year which in turn leads on to Beach Rd.

01 Grafton Gully Cycleway Map 1

At Upper Queen St the bridge over the motorway has been narrowed down significantly to provide more space for pedestrians and cyclists. Previous the bridge had 6 lanes of traffic plus a parking lane and footpaths on both sides. This has been narrowed down and the carriageway is now only four lanes wide (yet still seems largely empty of traffic). While the cycling area is fairly clearly delineated it does feel a bit like there should have been a slight height difference been the footpath and the cycleway.

Grafton Gully Opening - Upper Queen St Bridge

On the Northern side of the bridge you enter the cycleway. Unfortunately there have placed some of the large staples which are obviously to slow cyclists heading towards Upper Queen to prevent them from blowing through on to the road. I wonder if the same effect could have been achieved by putting a short fence out on the road edge.

Grafton Gully Opening - Upper Queen St Staples

Moving on down and just after you pass under Symonds St the path starts to dip down. It’s quite interesting feeling seeing the motorway that close and merging in front of you

Grafton Gully Opening - Motorway Merge

Just around the corner you get the sight of the gully opening up ahead of you and spanned by the magnificent Grafton Bridge.

Grafton Gully Opening - Grafton Bridge

As you approach Wellesley St you can clearly see that if we ever decide to humanise Wellesley St (which we should) it would be very easy to add a connection to do so.

Grafton Gully Opening - Wellesley St

At the same location you can also see where a bridge will be added which will give access to Whitaker Pl and Symonds St. It is meant to be completed by the end of the year.

Grafton Gully Opening - Whitaker Pl

From then on it is under Wellesley St where some motifs have been embedded into the concrete on each side of each entrance.

Grafton Gully Opening - Concrete Motif

From Wellesley St it is a short ride down to Grafton Rd where the route joins the section opened last year which in turn flows on to the Beach Rd section. I do have one issue with this part which is the slip lane that has been retained at Alten Rd and for which the planting makes it difficult to see if anyone vehicles are coming when you are heading north. Also on the Northern side of the Alten Rd intersection there is a short and sharp incline which seems like it might cause a few issues.

The videos below show what the route looks like heading both uphill and downhill between Quay St and Upper Queen St.

While there might be a few issues they are fairly minor in the grand scheme of things and all up I think this is a fantastic addition for the city. One aspect I was pleasantly surprised about was that the uphill section between Wellesley St and Upper Queen St was no where near as steep as I thought it would be. Some people may need to get off and walk but for many people it is easily rideable. From a quality perspective these two projects do feel like a step or two above anything else we have which is great to see. I think this and Beach Rd are going to represent an important turning point in the development of cycling in Auckland and people are going to demand this level of comfort in future cycling projects. I think the challenge for Auckland Transport and the NZTA will be in how they can get similar results from projects for a much reduced cost, something that should hopefully be possible if it’s a case of reclaiming some space on our streets.

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  1. I know they’re hugely controversial for some people, but the barriers at Upper Queen were placed in large part because of the apartment building coming right up to the edge of the footpath. Cyclists / pedestrians (or cyclists / cyclists!) getting hit here was the main issue, just no visibility around the gray wall you can see well in the third image. Seeing that my only serious incident on a bike (i.e. injury) for the last 20 years was a pedestrian stepping out behind a hedge a couple years back, I do kinda agree with the designers…

    I see my old map is still seeing good use. Sadly the Symonds Street access is nowhere on the cards yet – the most realistic option may be having a ramp going up along the K’Road motorway on-ramp. The ramp is pretty wide and while motorway designers love having a breakdown lane, I wonder whether there could be something done here on the east without stirring up the heritage concerns for the cemetery. The western side of Symonds would tie in better with the existing cycle path, but is also steeper to get up to – unless you go through the middle of the cemetery, which was a big no-no during the planning phase.

    1. The Symonds Strert onramp is unnecessary and too close to other ramps. I say close it and turn it into the bike connection between the cycleway and Symonds St.

    2. Max I looked at this yesterday when I rode it twice and I have the following comments:
      I estimate the height to be about 4 metres to road level at Symonds St over-bridge northern end so we have that height to cover to get up to Symonds St from the cycleway.

      1. The on-ramp is two cars wide at the K’Rd on ramp side to the merge area, one is used as emergency stopping lane or emergency access lane to the motorway. At the end it slims down to 1.5 lanes to actually enter the Motorway, removing part of it for a cycle lane access won’t work for NZTA operations I suspect. And the eastern side of the on ramp has a 6ft high wall of stone so you can’t run the access from that side either.

      2. If the K’Rd on ramp is closed as Fred and other suggest, then its a great cycle ramp ala the old Nelson St Off-ramp – again it would have to be a future “maybe one day” project.

      3. I suggest that instead of building direct access from the western side of Symonds St (over/through the cemetery) being built, that instead a switch-back design be built which starts between Upper Queen and Symonds st (but near to the Symonds St) bridge, and ramps up beside the cycleway and goes under Symonds St Bridge adjacent to the cycle lane, but nearer to the bridge abutment, – but its now 1.6-2 metres higher – so you’re half the height required already, then once on the eastern side of the Symonds st bridge, it does a 90 degree left turn, and then runs up hill a bit to/beside the on-ramp, between the on ramp and the Symonds St footpath “above”, emerging up between the bus stops on Symonds St.or with another 180 switchback, come out on Symonds St just before the northern end of the bridge area – after the bus stops.

      Not a great route I’d admit, but if you check the 3rd photo above you’ll see on the left hand side (on the other side of the railing) is where I’d put the linking cycleway – and its easily 2m above the cycleway there already.
      You can see the gradient of that from about 2:35 in the uphill video. And from abut 0:35 in the downhill video you see the crib walling that runs under the Symonds St bridge that I’d suggest you’d run the link on the left of and the gradient is not too steep and its on NZTA land to boot so no bothering with the cemetery is needed.
      Alternative is a ramp down from Symonds St bridge coming out beside the cycleway closer to Upper Queen – as thats a bridge/ramp design its going to bes relatively expensive.
      But without a doubt something is do-able here.

  2. Can we hope to have intersections on other cycleways upgraded to match what we see here? (I have the SW cycleway in mind, for signaling where it crosses Maioro St, Dominion Rd, Hillsborough Rd, and the entire design where it crosses Queenstown Rd).

    Legally, you have to dismount and walk your bike across these intersections, although nobody ever does.

    1. Fair point – and we are pushing for all new cycleway signals to have them. On the old ones, while it seems a paltry sum, adding them can cost 5K per intersection, so gotta find that first in the budgets. As you say, may not be so urgent, seeing that people just ride anyway.

  3. Rode in Saturday afternoon to check out the Grafton gully and Beach Rd cycle paths. Wow they are great. I only had one awkward moment on the way back up Grafton as you go down into the dip to get across Alten Rd, I under estimated how steep it was and had to brake hard, then thought I was going to go over the bars, but got it under control. My fault, going too fast, and wet as it was raining. The climb up Grafton wasn’t too steep either as I managed to stay on the big ring. This has certainly set the bar higher and people will want similar infrastructure for their own local areas.

  4. It’s been a great couple of months with Federal St, O’connell St and Upper Khartoum Place
    upgrades completed, there is still Bledisoe Lane, Daldy St and Westhaven board walk to be finished later this year. So what’s next?
    Hard to know with the uncertainty with budgets, I think continuing with the smaller projects like Freyburg Square should continue and larger projects like Victoria St could have less expensive upgrades for now

  5. Let cyclist numbers grow and then we will have greater numbers to feed ideas.
    It is lovely to see progress like this, now we need the communications from the users of their connectivity to where they are going/coming from so the extension is growing all the time as will the users.

  6. The one minor point: Why do cycleways in Auckland continue to be built as oversized footpaths? I.e., a strip of concrete? I regard these as Cycle Paths rather than Cycleways. A true cycleway is marked out with centreline, has signage etc, like a mini-road. The AT sections are done properly and look great, but the NZTA sections give the impression of a less-than-serious approach, aiming for recreational use, rather than a proper transport corridor for commuter use.

    1. Geoff, what signage do you need? ‘Serious commuters’ know to keep left, and otherwise there is literally nothing to put up signs for.

      1. It’s about the culture I guess, in Europe/US people know to move to the side if you ring your bell on a shared path, and not to take up the whole width. In NZ bike bells seem to be taken as some sort of insult, with people often glowering at you when you ring a bell to alert them to your presence on a bike. The same goes to the lycra clad sports cyclists, who rocket past without so much as a warning, it’s common courtesy to use bell IMO.

        1. The other issue is that half the pedestrians have Ipods in their ears. Bells are not as efficient as they used to be, though I have one on my bike and occasionally use it.

      1. AT policy* is not to mark centrelines on shared bike paths anymore – only on cycle-only paths like Beach Road.

        This is partly to help emphasise that peds could be on the path, wandering out into your way etc…

        *While built by NZTA, there’s some coordination with AT’s standards. Also, the path may (not sure?) be maintained by AT in daily practice.

    2. I agree with you. The cycle way should be marked as a cycle carriageway. Preferably even with a slight differential in level (5cm or so) with soft curb to clearly define it as seperate from the footpath.

  7. While it’s great that the finish and size of the project all tick more boxes than usual for cycling infrastructure, I was still struck by how isolated from the life of the city the whole Gully segment was. Even the pictures and videos in this post show how few buildings front onto it. The apartments at the Upper Queen end are directly adjacent yet fenced off, the Uni buildings expose blank walls and car parks, etc.

    More connections can always be added, but in the same way that “explaining is losing” in politics, “extending is losing” in urban bike network design — a street grid of bike paths would inherently be connected to many front doors and to each other, yielding a geometric multitude of routes. For the most part, these routes shouldn’t need large spurs and motorway-like on/off-ramps to actually to get somewhere, except where terrain renders it impossible (e.g. bridges over harbours, motorways, etc).

    More buildings can also be added to the route, but it’d be on one side only as the motorway is on the other, and won’t form a compact walkable/bikeable area (i.e. a roughly squarish grid). Anyway, we already have loads of great buildings that need access by bicycle; why build anew?

    If you care about things like frequency and connections in public transport networks, in the vein of Jarrett Walker’s “clearer thinking”, I don’t see why you wouldn’t also apply a similar level of analysis to bike networks. Although the dynamics of the system are slightly different, the geometry is not altogether unfamiliar. There can be such a thing as a connection-oriented grid for cycling, as well as walking, in the form of compact, densely-built neighbourhoods, with short blocks, maximum exposure of front doors to streets that have few dead-ends, etc. It’s hard to argue that the Gully passes this test (Beach Rd fares better, however).

    In Auckland, we already have the basis for bike networks laid out in our existing street grid, especially in the CBD, city fringe and isthmus streetcar suburbs. With similar logic to the CFN taking precedence over any other PT investment, we should have a network plan that truly leverages the street network, and aims to introduce bike paths upon them — AT’s regional cycling network doesn’t. The likes of K’Rd, Ponsonby Rd, Symonds St, Grafton Bridge, etc., are all more difficult to ride than they should be, including their adjoining side streets which need fine-grained improvements, and the PT nodes that they would hook up to. If we are going to spend millions in a particular area to improve cycling, surely the priority should be on those streets and focused on those PT nodes. This isn’t an academic concern: if the Government has earmarked $100million for urban bike improvements, and the Gully is the sort of design they have in mind, then we’ll miss out even more massively. Opportunity cost is real.

    Ironically, despite the Gully project being so deeply entrenched in the Central Motorway Junction, it does nothing to bridge the severance caused by the motorway. Instead it relies on the existing street grid for that — mainly Upper Queen Street. What I’m suggesting is that something like the kind of treatment Upper Queen St received, ought to be scaled out across more streets. What I don’t see is how the design philosophy behind the Gully (highway-like avoidance of intersections and buildings) can be scaled out and yet deliver anything like Dutch or Danish precedent that we ought to aspire to.

    Note: I’d like to emphasise that all of the above is based on fact — from the geometry of urban form to the political aspirations stated in the Auckland Plan. These are all falsifiable. It is not simply a matter of subjective, personal opinion or differing taste.

    1. I think you are right, but we’ve had such little cycling investment that anything seems good.

      Plus this kind of infrastructure is good for long trips. The rapid transit version of the cycling network that for sure needs to be supported by other paths and infrastructure.

      1. I don’t know. One of the things I enjoy about cycle paths is that there is no homogeneous perfectly designed route. They take you to the places you’d never otherwise see and behind the places you see every day. Connections don’t need to be everywhere otherwise you’d never need to make that slight detour out of your way and see some other part of your city; a to b will always be better via C, D, and little e (unless its raining horses).
        Save the homogeneous, well designed, paths for cars and possibly, one day, for those cycle routes that start to be constrained by capacity.

        1. joe,

          This is exactly one of the great benefits of a well-connected grid of streets that enables walking and cycling.

          It’s not possible to build a network of direct, door-to-door routes for everyone to get everywhere they want to go. If you try it, you’ll find the optimal, feasible, mutual solution is something resembling a squarish grid. Such a web is largely indifferent to which particular route, trip-chain, or unplanned wandering that anyone decides to take upon it. The grid services a noisy cacophony of journeys within its area. It’s a neutral(ish) platform upon which users construct their own arbitrary routes, in a collective, fluctuating multitude of directions, none of which might ever be foreseen by a planner with a map — including those opportunistic detours.

          In this respect it’s very much like the geometry of a frequent public transport grid: you get abundant access with more connections. The street network analogue here is the frequency of intersections across space (since frequency of vehicle boarding opportunities isn’t applicable), and applied at a smaller, human scale. A street grid for walking and cycling also maximises coverage, unlike transit, because it already reaches front doors — almost every single one, in fact — and it isn’t dependent on time (so it isn’t a straight tradeoff against the ability to connect), which is what allows cycling to complement transit at the last mile for multi-modal journeys.

          Intersections also provide ‘bumping places’ and a quality that I call ‘predictable serendipity’ — you’re more likely to encounter something interesting there, whether it is an inviting detour through an unfamiliar route, or a chance to meet someone you know (or don’t know!), or to stop off and engage with a local establishment (as agglomeration at crossroads is more likely/profitable/etc), and so on. Good urban form is what enables this kind of city life and transport experience; hence, building a grid of great streets ought to be our priority from the perspectives of transit, walking or cycling.

        2. As someone who bikes to work each day inthe cbd i reckon it would have been a lot more effective if some road space was reallocated to cycling aka what’s happened in Melbourne. R

  8. Is this for cyclists only? Or a pedestrian/cycle mix? All the signage on the path indicates cycles but I noticed a few pedestrians using it as well. The reason I ask is because here in Hawke’s Bay we have a fairly extensive pathway network and a lot of problems with pedestrians just spreading themselves across the pathway oblivious to the fact that there will be cyclist coming both ways. I have tried explaining to people to just treat it like a road – keep left and be aware – but have ben told on more than one occasion to go forth and multiply. Unless there is some signage placed at strategic points to indicate good cycleway ettiquette things could get out of hand quite quickly as patronage increases.

  9. Loved using this today would never have cycled to the waterfront without it ! Now looking forward to skypath & more connections.

  10. Thanks for the videos. Good to have a new cycleway, but it seems to have several shortcomings. On the uphill video the delays at traffic lights totalled about 1 min 20 secs, or about 10% of journey time. Given the light motor traffic at those crossings, there seems to be a case for giving cyclists priority there.

    Even before use has built up there seemed to be at least a couple of potential conflicts due to the narrow path and the staple barriers.

    I’ve read that Austroads (the standard for NZ road design) recommends the following widths for ‘shared footways’:

    • 2.0 m minimum where cyclists passing in opposite directions are rare
    • 2.5 m minimum where two-way cyclists are common with minimal pedestrians
    • 3.0 m minimum where two-way cyclists and pedestrians are common.

    It looks as though most of this cycleway is quite a bit less than that 3m minimum. Am I right?

    1. Hi John

      The path is consistent 3m wide (plus generally at least another 0.5m vegetation “shy space) – except at a stormwater drain shortly north of Grafton Bridge, where it goes down to about 2.5m for a short bit, and north of Grafton Road, where it is 4m wide (because of more pedestrians).

      Beach Road is also 3m wide between kerb and raised buffer, except for a part on Tapora St, where it is a shared path (not cycleway) and is a wee bit narrower (but actually combined with the old footpath it’s more like 5m…)

    2. NZTA’s guidelines for shared paths are in its Pedestrian Planning and Design Guide, section 14.12, Table 14.13 – Widths of unsegregated shared-use paths:

      Likely main use of path *:Local access only; Commuters; Recreational or mixed use
      Desirable path width: 2.5 m; 3 m; 3.5 m
      Path width range: 2 m to 2.5 m; 2 m to 3.5 m; 3 m to 4 m
      * Where the use is uncertain, provide a width of 3 m”

      plus, “it is important to: leave a lateral clearance distance of one metre on both sides of the path to allow for recovery by cyclists after a loss of control or swerving”.

      Unfortunately, NZTA generally seems to be oblivious to its own guidelines.

      1. “Unfortunately, NZTA generally seems to be oblivious to its own guidelines.”

        Why do you feel so? Sure, the “desirable” width is greater if you see the main purpose as recreational / mixed – but that is for unconstrained situations. The path route is all but that for much of its length.

        1. Max: the NZTA PP&DG doesn’t say that the guidelines apply only in unconstrained situations, and the videos show that for much of its length the path has a lateral clearance that appears to be less than a metre (zero in places) on at least one side, often both, despite NZTA saying that it is important to provide this clearance.

          And I say “generally” because there are other examples: for instance, the shared path that was part of the late, unlamented Basin flyover in Wellington was proposed by NZTA to be 3m between hard fences, while NZTA’s guidelines (which they omitted to mention in the application) say it should have been at least 2m (desirably 3m) +1m +1m width fence-to-fence.

          So it’s not how I feel: unfortunately, it’s a fact.

        2. But that is my point – the places where the guideline is not followed, there’s likely to be good reasons for it. The kind of reasons that, to meet the ideal design, would have increased the costs massively. So – tradeoffs, and a path that is clearly still significantly above past standards. And I don’t believe the result degraded the safety or efficiency seriously because it has things like a short section of 2.5m width (to avoid shifting a whole large stormwater main, or instead create a short extra section very steep cycle gradient uphill).

          Whatever we may say about how unfair it is that cycling gets so little money compared to roading, there’s a necessity here and now not to spend what little money we have chasing every little improvement that could be made but would be quite expensive. If you believe that this “value engineering” doesn’t go on in roading projects, you’d be wrong (though I will give you that they usually are under less pressure).

          Spend a few million or two more to get all the 0.5m shy spaces increased to 1m? Don’t think that would have been worth it. For all that I believe the project IS worth it, it was already quite costly, as cycle projects go.

        3. I agree with Max’s comments wholeheartedly, and its not just cycling projects which have cost versus features trade-offs either.

          AND equally/more to point – if you had to chose between a much wider cycleway or timely addition of additional links e.g. a link up to Symonds St, I’d take the latter option every time thanks.

          Yes, this is not perfect, its a learning/interim exercise, and I look forward to the day when its actually no longer used as a cycleway because the rest of the on-street facilities on future Aucklands roads are so much superior no body wants to use the cycleway.

          We’re not there yet, and won’t be for some time, but in the meantime we can use and enjoy it and I have and will, until such time there are better options.

        4. I’m not arguing with Max, but my original statement that NZTA seems to be oblivious to its own guidelines with respect to cyclists and walkers is absolutely true (and nothing to do with my feelings!). And no-one’s talking about “chasing every little improvement that could be made but would be quite expensive”, merely acknowledging that such guidelines exist and explaining/justifying any departures from them.

          I’ve not seen NZTA do that, but I could well be wrong: if there’s evidence that NZTA considered its own shared-path guidelines in the design of this path I’ll happily replace “seems to be oblivious” with wording that reflects that.

          In the absence of that my statement is factually correct, unfortunately.

  11. it does look like some “pedestrians and cyclists keep left” signs could be useful to reinforce the graphic messages and that a bell on your bike is a wise precaution

  12. Given the Upper Queen St path was formerly a road why didn’t they just paint it and put a small barrier on the lane like the Beach Rd path?

    Would surely have been cheaper and have produced a much better path,

    1. The Upper Queen Street Bridge was an Auckland Council part of the project – it is intended to become a “Gateway Feature” for the southern entrance of the city. However, Council didn’t have the money to do the vertical elements etc… of the gateway features at this time (it was supposed to be funded 2016 or so, though with the current funding cuts, who knows).

      So she short answer is, Council decided that they wanted to do the base stuff right, in a way the can build on (literally) later.

      Also remember that when they designed this, there WASN’T a Beach Road path to compare to. Sometimes things do move fast 😉

        1. Saw some last term when it was originally proposed by City Centre Transformation team. Think sculpture-y panel artwork. Problem is weight restriction of bridge. And I said to mind the fact that on the western side there’s a fabulous view of sunsets.

        2. This is on the Waitemata LB agenda for this month:

          “18. As part of the implementation of the Upper Queen Street Bridge cycleway officers have worked with NZTA to investigate to what extent the CCMP Upper Queen Street Bridge beautification aspirations could be achieved. Initial scoping included the investigation of tree planting and planter boxes but these options were deemed unsafe as the structure of the bridge could not withstand the additional loading. The improvements to the bridge were guided by NZTA structural guidelines and the result of this was that beautification options were very limited.

          19. As an alternative staff propose that beautification of the bridge focus on providing aesthetic lighting and public art as opposed to trees and planting. The design will still have a gateway focus to align with City Centre Masterplan aspirations.”

  13. From what I can see, there doesn’t seem to be any way of getting from the path to the universities – it just seems to go straight past them. This seems incredible given the volume of cycle traffic in Symonds St generated by AUT and AU. It looks like I will still be riding down Symonds St to get to AUT, in spite of all the money that has gone into this project.

    1. There is going to be a link to Fine Arts and from there there is an established walking route up to Symonds St, but no plans I know of for a link on the northern side of Wellesley St for either under the underpass, or to the School of Arch, and nor are there any plans to connect to Whitaker Pl further south. The there needs to be.

      Students and others will make an informal and messy one through the NZTA motorway planting to the School of Arch is my prediction…. hopefully that will gain the attention of whoever is in the way of completing this job properly.

      1. In my long discussions about this project with NZTA over the past few years they have often heard me ask time and time again for a link from the GGC to Wellesley St, and the reply was always non-committal, but they did say they would provide some kind of way to put in a link later, which they have done with that planted ‘ramp’ up to Wellesley St from the southern side of the underpass.

        I’ll see if I can keep pushing for a link to Wellesley St.

    2. Hi James,

      When I was a student, Grafton Rd came up to Symonds St right in the heart of the University. It seems the ideal connection to Engineering, Law, Arts, Biology etc faculties. I agree that there is no connection to Architecture or Fine Arts, but the bulk of the University is well connected to this new cycle route in my opinion.

      I cycled the CCG on Sat and it made me momentarily think I was back in Helsinki where I cycled to work daily. There were a number of cycling highways there much like this one.

  14. I rode this on Sunday (and saw Patrick taking photos halfway up).

    I caught the NEX from Constellation with my folding bike and got off at Wynyard. Rode across the Viaduct, Britomart, and got on the Beach Rd cycle path. Up the new path, onto the old one and out to Western Springs to help my friend move house out to Ranui.
    Later in the afternoon I caught the train from Ranui back to Grafton, across the bridge, looped around Upper Q St and onto the path back down, all the way across Viaduct and caught the NEX back from Fanshawe St.

    Things I learnt: the entire path is a little bit bitty, I guess I expected it to be more seamless. There’s a lot of crossings still, and the Beach Rd path kind of stops abruptly outside Vector Arena. The bike path is a lot more enjoyable going down than up, but it’s actually less steep than I was expecting. Easy enough to get up if you’re reasonably fit (the folks on the tandem motored up it!).

    It was great to see so many different cyclists using the path. Young and old, road bikes, BMXs, cruisers, mtn bikes, helmeted and not.

    I really look forward to being able to ride almost entirely on bike paths from the top of the Bays, all the way down to the Bridge, across and linking up with this path (and many others).


  15. “and the Beach Rd path kind of stops abruptly outside Vector Arena”

    It will be continued westwards to Britomart (to Britomart Place) by “early 2015” as per AT messages. Knock on wood.

  16. It is a nice route, but I think I prefer the more constant ascent climb up Symonds St. For my money it is faster going both up and down Symonds St/ANZAC Ave to get down to/from the waterfront. The bus lanes are fast 🙂

    Of course, I am talking about the weekends here, so not the same traffic levels as during the week.

  17. Trip update. Had a meeting at North Wharf after work so used the cycleway and Beach Road to get there from Mt Wellington. The cycleway is great, easy access from the western end of Grafton Bridge. Not so good going home though, I decided to avoid multiple right turns by just riding up Anzac Ave and Symonds St. Ironically forced across two lanes of Quay St by a bus with one of those ‘look out for cyclists’ posters on the back. The Beach Rd cycle lane is all very well, but being not physically separated it resembles the tidal zone of detritus that I normally try to avoid. And as for that sudden veer across to the wrong side of the road… f that, too hard, I just carried on along the westbound side of Beach Road. Would be interested in the opinions of regular users.

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