CYCLING

Top initiative opens door for more cycling in Akld

Thursday 18 December 2008, 7:51AM
By Auckland Regional Transport Authority
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AUCKLAND

The weather’s warming up and summer is on its way, so there’s no better time to saddle up and get out and about in the Auckland region by bike. To make it even easier, the Auckland Regional Transport Authority (ARTA) is launching a comprehensive set of five cycle maps; North Shore, Eastern, Western, Southern and Central Auckland.

The maps have been created in association with local councils, Cycle Action Auckland (CAA), and with sponsorship from Auckland Regional Public Health Service. They will officially be launched on Thursday 18 December when, following a morning tea event, attendees including Auckland Regional Council Chairman Michael Lee, will saddle up for a short cycle ride to Mission Bay on bikes provided by Bike Central.

Peter Clark, ARTA General Manager Strategy and Planning, said “This world class initiative allows cyclists of varying ages and ability to navigate their own routes. Each of the roads on the maps has been ridden by members of CAA and is graded in terms of safety and whether it is a quiet or busy route. The gradient of the roads and whether they have a cycle lane is also depicted.

“Cycling to work, school or play is an excellent form of everyday physical activity which is vital to keeping healthy and feeling great. The launch of these cycle maps makes it even easier for Aucklanders to use cycling as a means of making regular short trips; thus saving money and time, conserving the environment and staying healthy.”

The maps are based upon similar schemes in London and Hong Kong, among other leading world cities, and give people even more choice on means to travel. Mr Clark said “Not only is the launch of these maps bringing us into line with other top cities, but cycling is great fun, so we’re really encouraging people to get out there and give it a go”.

First editions of the Southern and Central maps, created last year, were hugely successful: now that the full set has been completed, it is hoped that they will contribute to encouraging more Aucklanders to take to their bikes.

The maps are free of charge and copies can be ordered from MAXX online at www.maxx.co.nz or by calling (09) 366 6400. You can also pick them up from a number of a number of outlets, including The Britomart Transport Centre, Citizen’s Advice Bureau and hospitals, in addition to a variety of cycle shops and other locations around the Auckland region.