Board members of Waka Kotahi have confirmed today that the agency will not be repurposing traffic lanes on the Auckland Harbour Bridge for cyclist or walking use.
Waka Kotahi has come under fire recently after a cyclist lobby group threatened legal action if the transport agency refused to open a permanent cycle lane.
The reason for denying the lane is due to the “significant health and safety issues associated with walking and cycling on the bridge structure at this time,” says Waka Kotahi Board Chair Sir Brian Roche.
However, there are plans to allow the public to walk and cycle over the bridge in a safely controlled manner during single day events this summer.
“The Board has considered lane reallocation on the Auckland Harbour Bridge on a number of occasions, and it is clear that the risks for people walking and cycling on the structure cannot be mitigated to the level where we can be confident that it is an activity which can be managed safely on a permanent basis,” Roche said.
“Waka Kotahi has undertaken a detailed analysis of all of the evidence available, and having considered that analysis, the Board has determined that a trial of lane reallocation on a permanent basis would not be appropriate at this time.”
The government also experienced significant public backlash when it announced it would be developing a $785 million cycling and walking bridge across the Waitematā Harbour with the idea eventually being scrapped.