I’ve left this a bit late; today is the last day to get your feedback in on some quick fixes coming to P Rd. But it doesn’t take a moment to choose between the two near identical options and just a few moments more throw a word or two it in as well. Go here.

In general AT and the Local Board are to be commended for the proposed changes as they will enable the street design to better follow the development of a new depth to the Ponsonby Rd strip; the noticeable lift in intensity throughout this area from Ponsonby Central and other places where the retail and hospitality now reaches further away from P Rd itself: Trading activity here is now much more 3-D and there are simply many more people.

P Rd Option 2

Option 2. Fullsized PDFs here

What is at stake and why does this matter? Ponsonby Rd is one of Auckland’s many urban centres that all deserve the same kind of improvements, the same re-tilting back towards providing better amenity for people and granting less space and free-reign for vehicles. So everything I say here about Ponsonby Rd is also true for other areas, adapted to local conditions. Additionally Ponsonby Rd can act as a leader in this change, because it has that kind of role in our city, it is an early adopter kind of place; the forces driving change are evident here earlier and more powerfully than other areas.

The importance of this cannot be overstated. Small nudges can lead to big improvements; if only we could get our institutions to lead instead of follow on these issues, or at the very least be more responsive. In practice traffic engineering’s inbuilt methodology of ‘predict and provide’ with regard to anything other than vehicle traffic actually becomes; ‘lag and reluctantly catch-up’ and only when forced to. This has become an unhelpful conservativism that is a tremendous brake on placemaking by those controlling our streetscapes. I get the tradition of technical conservatism inherent in other branches of engineering, for example in structural engineering, but this is an unhelpful carry-over into street design, a field that ought to have input from both spatial designers and engineers, but without the later having a veto over final outcomes. A subtle shift in the pecking order around street design could unlock a great deal of potential in our city.

For example take the intersection of Ponsonby with Richmond and Picton [below]. This used to have a Barnes Dance crossing, like there still is at the top of Franklin Rd. It now has pedestrian movements concurrent with vehicle traffic movements complete with every variety of arrowed turning manoeuvres across pedestrian flows. Simple observation shows this to be overly complicated and delaying for the ever increasing numbers of pedestrians. A small group of locals approached AT through the local board about this and got the following response:

Barnes Dance

Certainly it doesn’t have consistently high pedestrian levels; it does gets quiet here around 3am, but it sure as hell has very high numbers for an intersection outside of the City Centre, and is surely busier than the Franklin intersection. The shot below was taken on a sunny Saturday in December so shows it at a peak, but similar levels are not unusual through the day. And the schools remark is double curious, first it is an odd criteria for what is primarily a shopping and hospitality area, but also it fails to spot that this intersection pretty much exactly triangulates Richmond Rd School, Auckland Girl’s Grammar, and Freemans Bay School; students for all three certainly travel through here. And note there is absolutely no claim that what we are requesting might be unsafe in AT’s view, we can only assume [it isn’t stated] that they are, as usual, privileging driver time over pedestrian time, assuming there may be additional delay for some drivers with a Barnes Dance? They can’t deny that there would be greater clarity for all users with a Barnes Dance.

PONSONBY RD_5887

Happily the writer also added this:

P Rd Barnes Dance 2

but then this:

P Rd Barnes Dance 3

PONSONBY RD_5861

More positively AT are now catching up with reality on the issue of the side streets off P Rd. We have long campaigned for raised pedestrian tables on these, and at last they look like they’re coming. Fantastic. The footpath on this long spine is the key public realm here and is appallingly fractured by continuos carriageway that gives all priority to the one or two occupants in any vehicle over the often multitudes on the pavements. Might is right, is what the current street design says to us all. We look forward to seeing this solution at the tops of all these lovely narrow Victorian lanes eventually. A consistent and clear communication to us all when driving that this is a people place first and foremost.

PONSONBY RD_5683

The other great opportunity is to continue the existing street-tree amenity along the length of the area. These are of inestimable value; living proof of the old urban design truism:

‘Whatever the question; the answer is almost always a street tree’

PONSONBY RD_5622

In particular a row of trees is proposed for the over-wide Mackelvie St. This is good, the street needs compressing and enlivening now that it has many more attractors further down it. It has a new laneway through to Richmond and is soon to get another through to Pollen St as well. However it is my view that trees should not be in the middle on the street as proposed but rather on the eastern side where there are already hospitality businesses with outdoor chairs and tables. This means that people could sit under them on the widened pavement and they wouldn’t constantly be being pruned by passing trucks. They would be able to be enjoyed physically as well as visually by people.  The second raised table probably ought to move up to connect the two laneways too.

PONSONBY RD_5736

There’s plenty of width here to narrow the carriageway in order to draw pedestrians down into this newly activated zone of retail, hospo, and laneways. But the trees should, in my view be where the parked cars are on the left in the above picture, not in the middle of the street, moving the parking out to where the silver car is now. Those power lines could surely be undergrounded too.

PONSONBY RD_5741

PONSONBY RD_5671
Ponsonby Rd; A car-topia by design, yet an increasingly people rich place in spite of this.

Lastly this is a set of minor changes and it has to be mentioned that the issue of cyclelanes has been kicked down the road for later. The addition of new parking on Ponsonby Rd is not helpful for cyclists as this a street with a growing reputation for dooring incidents. The number of riders is increasing noticeably. There is a lot of additional parking coming to new buildings in the area and we feel this plan fails to take a sufficiently holistic view of the whole area and this new supply in particular into consideration. An issue for future action.

Below is what I added to my preference for Option 2:

Ponsonby Road Improvements

For both options:

First general context; as a local, who uses the street everyday with all modes, I am astounded by the rapid and sustained increase in activity everywhere in the area currently. Especially people on foot, but also on the road; driving and cycling, and stepping on and off the buses. I don’t believe that the physical environment is at all appropriate any more. The auto-domination of the entire width of P Rd is not helpful. A whole lot of additional parking is coming with Vinegar Lane which will further increase attempts to drive through what is increasingly a people rich environment. While 40kph limit is good the street design doesn’t support it.

The most important public realm here is the long fabric of footpath, it’s kind of like the biggest organ of the human body; the skin, an overlooked but vital resource. This needs improvement in duration, connection, and quality. So fixing the constant breaks at the side streets with raised tables is a vital and urgent upgrade. This will at last support the pedestrians’ right to the street for at least the length of the slim width they are currently allowed. Its virtual extension across the carriageway is also desperately needed. This is why we support the return of the Barnes Dance to Richmond/Picton.

 Street trees offer so much all users, the gaps in their appearance on P Rd and side streets need filling at every opportunity, especially anywhere people might linger [everywhere]. Shade and beauty are glorious utility.

Mackelvie St is currently over-wide, and needs compression to be more attractive to users, to draw people down to the attractions away from P Rd, to the new laneways and other businesses. The narrowing of the carriageway is good, however I really think the new trees would be far better down the southern side of the street where the carparking currently is, instead of the middle of the street, as there are already cafe table on the pavement here, and the increased width and new shade would be fantastic for users of the hospitality businesses here. This seating faces north and is blistering for the times of the year there are leaves on the trees. And this would help these businesses, this may not be what the owners say, retailers seem to often be extraordinarily fearful of change, and to misunderstand what us customers are drawn to.

Right hand turning into and out of MacKelvie needs looking at in more depth, and may need restricting.

The second raised table in MacKelvie should align with the new laneways, ie needs to be higher up the street.

Cycling gets new parking but no where to ride but for us over-confident types; this will need to be addressed soon; the numbers are rising fast. Until then how about at least some sharrows on one lane each way on P Rd?

I am concerned that the increase in on-street parking on P Rd is a step backwards and will create problems later when more long term improvements are proposed. Quick fixes are great; but keep an eye on the longer term.

In summary: The raised tables are great, any increase in street trees is fantastic. Until proper bike lanes are added I think sharrows in the outside lanes on P Rd would go a small way towards legitimising the ever increasing cycling there…..all good for a quick fix, and I look forward to further improvements.

 

PR 2015

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65 comments

    1. Raised tables and speed bumps have the downside of having cars and other vehicles constantly braking and accelerating. And especially buses are slowed down quite a bit.

      The most evil traffic calming devices are the single lane chokers, like the ones proposed on Queen Street, Northcote. They just cause lots of frustration and accidents. Just Say No.

        1. I didn’t mean all traffic calming is evil, that was just referring to chokers. But I may be biased, as I said to Max, they are showing up on all the wrong places where I grew up.

        1. I have no citation. Just observations from where I grew up. The local council had one of them installed in my street (and in a few other places).

          There has not been a single day there was no broken glass lying around that choker. And it was a place where I passed by on my bike regularly. It had a few reflector poles on it, and usually they were all crooked. Sometimes one of them was just broken.

          Someone got frustrated enough to on purpose swerve on the other lane after going through one, ramming another car in the flank. That other car almost went completely off the street trying to evade him.

          Rumour went the council got an inquiry from a nearby hospital about why there was an upsurge in accidents over there.

          I think the problem over there was, they were put in the wrong place. They may be appropriate in very quiet back streets, but on a street with significant traffic volume they are a big no-no.

          1. So some person loses control because their journey is delayed for 30 secs and it is road layouts problem? No, the road layout is doing exactly what it is intended to do.

            It is NZ drivers that must change to realise that safety is the prime concern, not speed.

          2. OK to be clear that was back in rural Belgium. Home to an entire generation who learned it is OK to drive at 100 kph on built-up roads. Getting them to slow down was quite the thankless task.

            Regarding citations, we don’t have the luxury of publicly available statistics back there.

            About that frustration. Wishing it doesn’t exist doesn’t make it so. Non-ideal people get frustrated. And we have to make our traffic work with non-ideal people. Frustrated people tend to do stupid things, so it’s worth taking that into consideration. For instance here in NZ, at the start of summer you always see these messages to please, please pull over when there is a queue behind you and let them pass. I think the reason behind that is avoiding frustration.

            So I have a problem with chokers. Maybe I have just seen them being used in the wrong places. Somewhere random along our long built-up strips of roads. They were built at the edges of what was called the “built-up area”. Which is largely meaningless over there (long story). It would be like the Auckland council still basing traffic policy on what areas were built up in 1960. Often they ended up far away from any place which actually needs to have the traffic calmed. Non-ideal drivers will just speed up again after they stop at those chokers.

            Question to the traffic engineers: How is a choker actually supposed to work? And also where would it be appropriate? I see how it works with ideal drivers: you slow down because of the choke point, etc. But in real life, unlike speed bumps or chicanes, they do not force you to slow down if there is no oncoming traffic. The more propeller-headed will not slow down for oncoming traffic either. So now we don’t just have cars travelling at excessive speed, but cars at excessive speed, on collision course. What am I missing?

  1. Do you know why the raised tables don’t have zebra crossings painted on them?

    Why do the raised tables in Devonport get zebras (such as the Clarence and Victoria intersection), but a similar historic high pedestrian area like Ponsonby not get zebras.

    Perhaps we should all submit asking for zebras on tables (like I did weeks ago).

    1. A Zebra crossing requires a certain combination of vehicle volume and pedestrian volume. If there are low vehicle volumes, the zebra doesn’t provide much benefit. Zebra crossings can also be far more dangerous than just having speed table. Reducing the speed of vehicles with a raised table is often a sufficient answer.

      People often forget the road code when it comes to zebra crossings. The pedestrian has the obligation to check the road is safe to cross before they step out. Vehicles may not see the pedestrian and run them down. The driver will not automatically be at fault. Just walking out onto the road and expecting vehicles to stop is why zebra crossings are actually dangerous and why they aren’t installed all over the place. They give a false sense of safety to pedestrians where there really isn’t one.

      1. In most other parts of the world, zebra crossings work very well. Most people are smart enough to check if the cars around them can stop safely before crossing.

        But yes they require cars to give way to pedestrians. Which will be a bit of a culture shock for some.

      2. Actually a pedestrians ONLY obligation is that they “must not suddenly enter a pedestrian crossing when an approaching vehicle is so close to the pedestrian crossing that the driver of the vehicle is unable to give way to the pedestrian”. If a driver is further enough away to stop but knocks down a pedestrian because they weren’t paying attention then the driver is a fault

      3. Roeland you missed my point entirely. Most pedestrians and drivers use their brain, but a small group don’t. Zebra crossings are safe for the 99% but deadly for the 1% who don’t check and just walk out in front of a car. Safety engineers must cater to that 1%. Yes the vehicle must legally give way to the pedestrian, but if the road is busy and full of distractions or it is night time and there is a broken street light and a pedestrian just walks out without checking then it isn’t easy for the police to tell who was at fault. Accidents are always a combination of multiple factors.

        And if you actually look what is happening overseas, zebra crossings are being removed all over the place. In the UK alone they have taken out hundreds of them. They date back to a time when vehicle numbers were a small fraction of what they are now. Research shows zebra crossings make things more dangerous for pedestrians unless actual vehicle speeds are reduced. Hence raised tables are seen as most effective in increasing pedestrian safety.

        Lowering the speed limit without doing anything else is useless because it just becomes a police enforcement issue and they have enough work as it is. Unless you change the road environment to get people to slow down, then drivers won’t slow down. This is why NZ has its current speed limit policy. Generally speaking, the speed limits match the driver behaviour, not the other way around. And the driver behaviour is determined by the type of road environment.

        1. Ari I would say you have it backwards; if drivers aren’t ‘seeing’ pedestrians or crossings it’s because the street design has made them invisible. The solution is more pedestrian priority not less.

        2. The city where I studied, Leuven, is also removing zebra crossings in the centre, but only after making the entire centre a 30 kph zone. In effect the entire city centre is a bit more considered a shared space now. If anything that requires people to use their brain much more than having a zebra crossing.

          Those pedestrian refuges have the same flaw regarding the 1% not using their brain. You can still walk out in front of a car. And car drivers can still text while driving and swerve onto one of those refuges.

          1. Which is why you use raised tables to get the best result. Zebra crossings alone: -28% reduction (!) in ped safety. Zebra crossings WITH raised tables, 80% improvement. Research quoted in NZTA, Pedestrian Planning and Design Guide.

            Bit more difficult on PT routes, but on side roads, it should have been a no-brainer for a long time.

            Refuge islands alone only provide an 18% reduction in pedestrian crashes. Ironically, adding cycle lanes provides a 30% pedestrian crash reduction (yep, cycle lanes provide PEDESTRIAN crash reduction).

          2. That’s an interesting statistic.

            So raised table are the best solution then? Makes sense, as they enforce a low speed where pedestrians cross. We could have them on the main street as well, if we design them in a way you can drive over that table at, say 20 or 25kph.

            But I wonder if a refuge gets better statistics simply because often pedestrians just don’t cross the street.

          3. The research was a bit of a collation of different research sources for various treatments, I gather. It’s hard to do a comprehensive study, because that would require multiple very similar locations with no real differences in anything EXCEPT the treatment – or a location(s) where the treatment gets changed several times while everything else stays the same. Either method is not something you can do well in real world… so yes, some indirect effect could come from the road with a refuge looking so dangerous that fewer pedestrians cross mid-block in the first place etc…

            So we don’t really claim the reduction is a fixed value – but it’s clear that some work a lot better than others, and raised tables are at the top of the effectiveness scale. Bus ops people hate them though, which is why previous attempts to get them included on P Road failed.

        3. Max my impression from that research is that the speed reduction is where the benefit comes from as opposed to the zebra crossing. That the speed hump is very effective by itself. Just look at those nasty courtesy crossings in Henderson town centre. I think it just ends up being a cost thing. They are expensive to put in and can’t be done where you have PT.

          1. Yes, definitely the benefit comes – must come, comparing the two percentage impacts – from the raised table. And stats match logic too: A raised table makes drivers slow down, and slower speeds reduce both the likelihood and the severity of crashes.

            Agree they are more expensive – of course, human lives and health are expensive too, so seeing that they aren’t exactly super super expensive, I think they are good value, though I see some merit in the buses argument against them. Maybe speed cushions for those areas (but they can’t be combined with pedestrian crossings directly).

          2. They were probably blinded by your hi-viz and didn’t know how to react and just drove through. Also I don’t call those raised tables. They are barely noticeable and no one needs to slow down at all.

            I don’t think it is a lack of zebras. The one down the road at Mission Bay is well used and well respected, causing massive queues. The difference is no one uses the crossing at KT’s because everyone drives there and there is nowhere else to go. Low pedestrian volumes leads to drivers forgetting the zebra is even there. Safety in numbers.

        4. I stood on a raised table that has a zebra crossing, outside Kelly Tarltons, while wearing a hi viz vest (during daylight) and 3 vehicles drove aimlesly through. Becuase we have so few zebra crossings, and create bad habits at school crossings, many drivers have simply switched off.

      1. Actually, many self-respecting cities are in countries where pedestrians crossing side roads have priority as long as they walk parallel to the main road.

        Zebra-effect EVERYWHERE, not just where we managed to convince planners and safety engineers that we have enough pedestrians.

        1. We don’t have that rule in Belgium, but cities often paint zebra crossings across side streets along the main roads, everywhere, so we end up with the same situation for pedestrians. And the stop lines are then painted before those zebra crossings (as opposed to the typical alignment here, with the roadway).

          But +1 to just putting it into the road rules.

  2. If the role of the street is not transport-oriented, why so many on-street carparks? Surely you could get rid of almost all of them by just building one decent parking building. There are a few lots where that could be done. Remove the on-streets, free the roads/footpaths for pedestrians

    I’m a teensy bit uncertain about putting in street trees solely so that local restaurant owners benefit… seems a bit unethical? We have no Mehajers here, let’s keep it that way

    1. You do understand that cafe owners pay the Council for the right to use pavement space don’t you? Also of course we want successful and more attractive local business; I don’t get the idea that business isn’t part of the community too. Anyway the benefit falls more for the customer and the street.

      1. Sure, but unless you’re suggesting we increase their open space licence fees after putting in the trees, they’re getting a freeby for nothing
        PS I might suggest you look at commercial rent per m2 on Ponsonby Roaad, then look at what they pay for those outside dining spaces

      1. So can badly designed roads, badly designed stormwater drainage, or badly designed power lines. Trees are well-known urban technology, you just gotta do them right 😉

  3. So once again the obsession with removing cars and other motorised transport is proposed. So how does one meet with friends at all hours when public transport will not do the trick? Not everyone who visits bars and cafes in p Rd lives within walking distance. And again how to service vehicles etc go about their business as more and more parks are removed. Much short sightedness in the anti car tirades.

    1. There is more than enough driving and parking in Ponsonby, and all those people already get there somehow… maybe, you know, some even use the buses? There is in fact too much driving and soon to be even more parking in the area. And you do understand that no one enters any shop in their car, eh?

      Calm down a little and do some counting: Including parking there are six full lanes for motorised vehicles on Ponsonby Rd, there is no threat to service vehicle access by the addition of pedestrian tables and a Barnes Dance crossing, in fact more loading zones instead of parking would be the logical solution to delivery access issues; your claims are simply hysterical and exaggerated.

        1. There are some 800+ carparks coming under Vinegar Lane, for those who foolishly think more carparking makes for a better place. It just makes for more driving of course. Car parking supply is a driving amplifier; street cafe seats are a pedestrian amplifier.

          On street parks are a buffer between pedestrians and moving traffic, but then so are bike lanes…. on street is useful for delivery too. Multi storey car parks are hideous.

          Simon Wilson in the current metro on what the problem is in Ponsonby:

          1. Do you have any info/links to an update on what is happening on the new Supermarket site? I recall that when Countdown bought the SoHole off the receiver they said they were going to fill in the bottom three levels because they didn’t need the space. I always felt that was shortsighted and the city could/should have made some arrangement to use those lower levels as a park n ride facility. (Yes, that’s probably at odds with Transportblog thinking)
            I also don’t understand why a supermarket has to be built above ground, given that they all seem to have at least 3 covered walls and lots of fluorescent lighting all day. It seemed smarter (IMO) to have built it underground, with retail on the ground level and apartments above. Still, it’s done and dusted now. I drove/walked through Vinegar lane at the weekend and the apartments look interesting (albeit the supermarket has hogged the sunniest spot on that site – couldn’t our city planners exert any sway?)

          2. As has been shown many times, Park n Ride, especially in the inner city is a not a good idea.

            Better to just make that a public car park with charges that encourage it never to be full. Then remove the same number of parks off the street.

            Business could offer free parking in that building with purchases. Then they would be passing on the true cost of supplying parking rather than expecting a rate payer subsidy for their business.

      1. Yes, exactly! Well said Bruce.

        Some people seem quite confused on this issue. So I’ll boil it down:
        1. Providing people with more transport choices is not anti-car. Unless you think that “choice” and “cars” are antonyms.
        2. Efficient pricing (e.g. for curbside parking) is not anti-car. It’s just plain common sense.
        3. However, when you oppose the provision of bus lanes or pedestrian crossings out of some misplaced fear that they are “anti-car”, you are opposing choice, convenience, and safety for other people.

  4. One inescapable factor is that Ponsonby Road provides the only connection between Herne Bay/northern Ponsonby and Grey Lynn/Mount Eden other than some convoluted detours through quiet residential streets. For many years one of my tasks as traffic rep. for the old Western Bays Community Board was attempting to limit the amount of traffic “rat running” through residential neighbourhoods, particularly John Street and its narrow side streets. But success there emphasised the role of Ponsonby Road as the only north-south arterial through the area. The long awaited direct connection of the Harbour Bridge with the North Western Motorway (SH16) did relieve Ponsonby of some through traffic but the population on the isthmus has meantime grown by over 50% so Ponsonby Road remains a very busy thoroughfare. Speed tables are not a practical solution on a bus route but we did introduce the 40kmph zone (after years of campaigning) and the mid-block pedestrian refuges. The new scheme will hopefully further mitigate the problems but cannot ultimately solve them.

      1. Patrick I think you may have misunderstood Geoff’s comment about speed tables. I read it as Geoff looking at potential safety improvement options in previous years and acknowledging speed tables aren’t a solution on a bus route (ie P Rd), but that he was involved in campaigning for the pedestrian refuges & 40kph zone.

        1. Is this a thing that you don’t put speed cushions with buses, because they have exactly that in Highbury which is a frequent network route I think.

  5. It would also be good to see Red Light Cameras installed at Richmond Road – people seem to think that the red lights at that intersection are optional and given the large number of pedestrians who use it, it will only be a matter of time before someone is hit by a car or bus. Cars also accelerate towards the red lights meaning they are usually going through the red light at speed.

  6. Nice write up – you are right, the better Ponsonby Rd becomes the more hope for the rest of us. I’m looking forward to cycling a leisurely 6km over to P Rd once Skypath is built – so best prepare for us northern barbarians now!

  7. > Trading activity here is now much more 3-D and there are simply many more people.

    Well, it’s become 2-D rather than simply 1-D (linear). But there’s still nothing happening in the third, vertical dimension: there’s nothing much above the ground floor, sadly.

    1. Point taken, but not strictly true, the recent building on the former gas station on Mackelvie and P is four stories, just bursting with people at work who then pour onto the street to eat and shop. And Vinegar Lane has some height too.

      But generally there’s not as much as would be ideal to really crank up the value, character and vitality of the strip. In general my view is that while area has retail and residential it is lacking commercial space, that third leg to the economic stool. More floors above the frock and coffee shops would be better for all concerned, especially local residents: Local employment opportunities!

  8. I personally thought those last 3 shots of streets around Ponsonby Rd were really interesting. I’ve only been away from Auckwood for 5 months and yet am already shocked by images of Auckland’s hostile street environment.

    And the 40km/hr speed limit on Ponsonby Rd cracks me up. I mean, yes, that is an appropriate speed given the urban context. The only problem is that the street itself is designed for a hummer to drive at 60-70 km/hr. Wide roads, generous curves etc. All of which gives drivers cues to driver faster.

    Here in Amsterdam I’ve seen many trucks delivering goods to supermarket using extremely narrow (by NZ standards) side lanes: The trucks drive slow, and the rest of the world works around them. A bit of give, a bit of take, a lot of care – no worries. The upside is that for the 23 hours of each day that delivery trucks are not delivering to a store, the street around them is that much more beautiful.

    I know what trade-off I’d rather make!

  9. What is at stake and why does this matter? Ponsonby Rd is one of Auckland’s many urban centres that all deserve the same kind of improvements, the same re-tilting back towards providing better amenity for people and granting less space and free-reign for vehicles.[…] Additionally Ponsonby Rd can act as a leader in this change, because it has that kind of role in our city, it is an early adopter kind of place; the forces driving change are evident here earlier and more powerfully than other areas.

    In our city Ponsonby is a leading preventative of change – a low density architectural stasis of an inventively contrived “historic” nature has spread from this area to become evident, and powerfully so, across Auckland. This “historic” preservative seeks to lock in the suburban single dwelling model that created the era of the motor car. Ponsonby Rd is not an urban centre, it is a suburban centre and wilfully so.

    Development of the type proposed here should be first implemented in Eden Terrace, Newmarket, Parnell, Glen Innes, New Lynn, Three kings, Onehunga, Otahuhu, Mt Wellington and Royal Oak – places where density of living is increasing and people will need to be attracted to. Ponsonby should be at or near the bottom of the pile. How about a 71 year moratorium on all new developments for Ponsonby in keeping with the desire to preserve the “history” of the area?

  10. I’d love to see a continuation of the Three Lamps all the way up but configured with 1 row of car parks and traffic in both directions…eg:
    3m footpath. 5m parking @ 90 deg (with gaps for trees/seats/etc…eg three lamps), then 6m manoeuvring, 3m lane [centrlerline] 3m lane, 3m cycle path, 4m footpath total = 27m.

    http://s10.postimg.org/mbme6bwll/Ponsonby_Ed.jpg
    Parking areas flexible based on bus stop locations, side street turning, etc…ie bus stop replaces parking, centreline bends if required.

  11. Ponsonby used to be a place we loved to go. We worked in the area and were able to eat, shop and enjoy the parks. These were good memories. However we cannot consider being there anymore. Without enough street parking it is too dangerous and painful. Most of the time it is inaccessible now. There are many similar places that also have dropped on street parking completely. These are places which are totally inaccessible. It is sad to feel that a piece of culture and tradition cut out from your life. To have viable fear when traveling to a Christmas function a couple of weeks ago, and have that fear become realized all too quickly with injury. That you are being locked away from your community through transport design changes but there you go. At least the supermarkets have adequate disabled parking, else we wouldn’t be able to get food or medication. In fact without those places to park we would not be able to leave the house at all. Life is a prison in which you are locked away from many places. Only open to the affluent. I am praying to make it to Christmas. Not being able to partake of any social community Christmas cheer it will be a fight with the devil.

    1. Around 1000 car parks have/are being added to Ponsonby; 680 alone at Vinegar Lane. These include disabled parking. Unless people are abusing these spaces those that qualify for them are getting ever more access to the area. Of course the bigger problem is the amount of traffic clogging the roads that is also stimulated by these additional parking spaces, the failure to improve and incentivise alternative means for the able bodied to get to the ever attractive area.

      1. Yes I believe I mentioned if it wasn’t for the supermarkets we would be locked in. Thank you Progressive Countdown. In addition they will also house Fairfax media (approx 500 staff) of whom will also be using the parking facilities. A boost to the income going into the area. There is an end date estimated at June 2016. That does not change the current state. If you are going to different areas of Ponsonby road it is still terrible. As an example take a map of the city around Ponsonby, black out any streets with an incline, any parking that requires stairs for access, pick your destination and black out anything that is more than 50m away. You will likely find there is not much after that but continue with the black. Black out any buildings that only have stair entrances. Remember the enemy of Professor X is stairs. Black out areas which are not adequate crossings. You will not be running or jogging this journey so road crossings must be legit even if they take a significant chunk out of your 50m. Worse case is you will barely get 24m along a street, black out appropriately. Then add for fluctuations in daily usage and peak periods. You will likely find that the one disabled park in 100m is already taken at peak periods so you will need plans for multiple alternatives with 30min driving around Ponsonby time between. However you will still only have that same distance limit when outside a vehicle. When looking at the final map it will looking like The Nothing is taking over. Piece by piece more black eats up the city. Such as footpath barriers installed so only able bodied people can reach the footpath. It boggles the mind but really the result is less is accessible as years go by. You want a organization that is inclusive refer to Countdown. You want to promote exclusivity try AT.

        1. Yes exactly, so the problem is the deeply appalling pedestrian environment. So hard to operate a wheelchair or a pram along here. You will see this above in the third photo where a wheelchair user is clearly obstructed from crossing a small side street because of excessive auto-priority. Also the lack of a continuous grade further restricts wheelchair and pram users. I have spent many years pushing both these along P Rd and it is long overdue that it was fixed. As for parking, your issue is simply solved with an increase in dedicated parking for disabled users, and the enforcement of them; not by massive increases in total parking. After all there have been recent increases both at Ponsonby Central and Lot 3 [Corner Mackelvie and Ponsonby Rd] over 200 new spaces, yet it appears to not make you happier….

          1. Most “improvements” by the council and by your suggestion would only deteriorate what little level of access there is. Waiting for cars to pass a road before crossing is not an issue and for which there are provisions for disability. But cycle lane barriers, shared space roads, removing road parking only increase the risk and lack of accessibility. The overall result in the past few years has been a decrease in available parking areas. Even recently the Council sees it’s improvements are to remove disabled access, https://www.facebook.com/permalink.php?story_fbid=896745140380252&id=856488744405892. Only through protest were these points restored. You want to talk about road & footpath design, sure I am keen on that but you need better sources than a blog. If you believe that by looking at a picture or reading a blog you could understand the entire concerns of all disabled users including those with wheelchairs, those with dogs, those with rotting muscles and those without any degree of self mobility at all you may want to truly try to experience what it is like even for a day. Say a journey from Takanini to the city to your casual city shopping, and your usual restaurant dining spots while not being able to lift your legs 10cm or raise & use your arms, go up any degree of a hill or stairs, or trust your eyes. But at all times managing to pull off at least a 9hr day at work. As a reminder you would not be able to catch most buses, (limited accessibility into them and the falling hazard is a guaranteed bonus prize).

  12. Hopeless is indeed the right handle for you; I wouldn’t expect to undertake ‘casual city shopping’ after a 9hr day in Takanini even if fully able, I think you have some extraordinarily unreasonable expectations of what is achievable under any circumstances in a city of 1.5m people.

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