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Christchurch City Council Media Release 8 September 1999

Items of news arising from the September 7 meeting of the City Services Committee of the Christchurch City Council:

Lights for Maidstone Road

Traffic lights are likely to be installed at the Maidstone-Waimairi roads intersection with the provision of a pedestrian island, the marking of cycle lanes, and a painted median between the intersection and Tudor Avenue.

Concern was expressed about the lights proposal by owners of the majority of shops in the shopping centre and tenants.

David Lynch of Torquay Holdings Ltd told the committee that it had sought independent traffic engineering advice on the matter. The committee chairman, Denis O’Rourke, said that report would be considered. The final decision will be made by the full council.

Cycle lanes

The highest priority must be given to finishing the major cycle lanes in the city, says the committee chairman, Mr O’Rourke.

He said he was frustrated that the Sumner to the city cycle land was not completed.

"Our major thrust must be to get more people using cycles," he said.

He admitted the danger to cyclists by opening vehicle doors was a problem but it could be solved with education. "I see more cars driving along cycle lanes all the time. They should not be there. We need to promote that message," Mr O’Rourke said.

He said he felt unsafe using the cycle lane in Humphries Drive. "You are a goner at times along there, especially at 70kmp," he said.

"Our strategy must be to reduce the growth of vehicles on our roads," he said.

Cc Ron Wright thought some cycle lanes were too narrow and were a recipe for disaster. He wanted to see more lanes coloured red as in Kilmarnock Street. The cycle planning officer, Alix Newman, said it cost $30,000 a km to colour lanes. He said the council should look at the most appropriate technique in the various situations.

The committee decided to set a priority setting process for cycle lanes.

 Northern road outlet

Cr Ron Wright said he was frustrated with delays on deciding a northern arterial route.

"What the dickens is going on? We have been along this track for so many years now," he said.

The council should not waste time and money on yet another report, he said. "We have been waiting for 15 years as it is," he said.

He wanted an options scoping study advanced in its timing but Cr O’Rourke warned that the report had to be "robust."

A report from a senior transport planner, Stuart Woods, said the scoping study would be ready about June next year for public consultation but the committee decided to get an interim report by February so that assessments could be made for the next Budget.

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