There is still some misinformation about the NRA’s position on Skypath/Shared Path. Because of the negative effects that aspects of the initial proposal would have had on Northcote Point, the Association lodged a formal objection to it in the Environment Court. That did not signify opposition to pedestrian and cycling access across the harbour, but was necessary in order to mount a challenge to details of the initial proposal. Legal costs and personal risks to Executive members, forced us to withdraw at the appeal stage. Our actions however, made other parties look more closely at the inadequate detail of the initial proposal, some key parties withdrew and the whole situation has changed.
The ball is now in NZTA’s court, because the Transport Authority owns the Bridge and motorway, and has to finalise safe, well-engineered plans for the Auckland Harbour Bridge Shared Path and the Seapath on the Northcote side. Government’s decision to fund it and other infrastructure means it is only detail that may need addressing.
NRA’s position 2020
The Northcote Residents Association opposed two aspects of the original plan. One was the safety and engineering issues which are now the responsibility of NZTA. The other was that Northcote Point just does not have enough room for the infrastructure required for the northern terminus to be here, certainly with projected usage numbers – the project must continue seamlessly into the planned Seapath.
Many Northcote residents want to have pedestrian and cycle access across the harbour.
Northcote has already seen some very poor design by Auckland Transport of the extremely expensive, and little-used Northcote Safe Cycle Path. Some of the Northcote Residents Association’s concerns were listened to and the design for Queen Street from Onewa Road to the Bridgeway Theatre was modified satisfactorily. The design from the theatre to the southern end of Queen Street, however, is most unsatisfactory but we are now stuck with it. It is quite dangerous for cyclists to use the designated cycle path because of exposure to opening car doors and narrow access, often partially blocked, beside each anti-speed hump. Bike Auckland has the same opinion.