A potentially life-saving pedestrian crossing has been the cause of an 18-month-long debate between Auckland Transport and an Auckland North Shore community.
Now, the crossing has progressed to the public submission stage, which has left advocates delighted.
Birkenhead’s Hinemoa St is the main route from Highbury town centre to the Birkenhead Ferry Terminal and is on the Auckland cycle route.
But from the top of Hinemoa Street to the ferry terminal at the bottom, there are no pedestrian crossings.
The busy street is also home to Highbury House – a community facility with an early childhood centre, a preschool, and a group of shops and cafes.
Highbury House manager Angela Spooner said she wasn’t happy with AT’s rejection of the original proposal and so she appealed.
“The pedestrian crossing will slow the traffic down and make it safer for everyone.”
The proposal is to install a crossing at 100 Hinemoa St, outside Coffee General and just before Rugby Rd. Some street parking will be lost in the installation.
North Shore Ward Councillor Richard Hills has been another strong advocate for the crossing saying that from a pedestrian safety point of view, the crossing is essential.
Also, investing in these sorts of projects will encourage people to not use their cars when going on shorter journeys, Hills said.
Submissions are now open and can be lodged at at.govt.nz, search: Hinemoa St.
Article by Laine Moger
Published 06 October 2017 The North Shore Times – stuff.co.nz
Consultation status: closed 6 October 2017
Proposal reference: RTV-078
AT had proposed to install a zebra crossing at 100 Hinemoa St in Birkenhead, including the removal of some on street parking.
The proposed changes included:
- Installation of a new zebra crossing, traffic islands and pram crossings.
- Removal of existing pedestrian refuge island at 102-108 Hinemoa St.
- Installation of broken yellow lines (no stopping parking restrictions) on the approach to the crossing.
Why the changes are needed
We are proposing these changes in response to local requests for safer pedestrian facilities on Hinemoa St. The proposed crossing will also act as a traffic calming measure on this busy road.
Thank you everyone for your feedback.
The proposal received mixed feedback with some concerns raised by respondents. After reviewing this feedback and all other supporting evidence, the proposal will proceed with minor changes to the next stage of detailed planning. These changes include raising the zebra crossing and reducing the width of the central traffic islands.
- Concern that the loss of on-street car parking will negatively affect local businesses. Our proposal aims to balance the demand for parking in this area with local requests for a safer pedestrian crossing. Whilst we appreciate the inconvenience of losing parking directly outside individual businesses, adequate parking still exists at a reasonable distance on Hinemoa Street, Rugby Road and Glade Place.
- Suggestions that pedestrian demand is not high enough on Hinemoa Street to justify installing a crossing and removing car parking. Our surveys show that a high volume of pedestrians are crossing at multiple locations near 100 Hinemoa Street. We have concluded that this area requires a safer crossing that will also reduce vehicle speeds and create a more comfortable environment for all road users.
- Concern that the proposed crossing will cause additional safety hazards and confusion for both drivers and pedestrians because it is located too close to the intersection with Rugby Road. We have surveyed the site of the proposed crossing and our calculations show that there will be adequate visibility for drivers and pedestrians approaching the new zebra crossing. Road signage will also be installed to notify drivers of the new crossing.
- Requests to move the proposed crossing closer to the Highbury Community House and Crèche at 110 Hinemoa Street. Pedestrian surveys show us that most pedestrians are crossing between Rugby Road and Glade Place. We therefore believe that 100 Hinemoa Street will be the most effective location for a crossing facility.
- Concern that the proposal will negatively affect nearby properties due to noise from vehicles required to break when approaching the crossing. Whilst we appreciate that our proposal involves changes to traffic movements at this location, we expect that noise from breaking cars will not be any louder than cars stopping to pull into parking spaces.
- Concern that the removal of on-street parking will result in cars parking in residential driveways when visiting local businesses. Parking in driveways is prohibited. We recommend regularly reporting these parking infringements to our parking enforcement call centre, which operates 24 hours, 7 days a week. Please call 09 355 3553.
- Requests to upgrade angle parking on Glade Place, near the intersection with Hinemoa Street (due to reports of these parking bays being muddy with potholes), include time restrictions and clear markings to identify the parking space boundary and prevent residential driveways from being blocked. We plan to tidy existing parking spaces in Glade Place when the new zebra crossing is constructed on Hinemoa Street. Our surveys show that time restrictions are not required for these parking spaces at this point in time. If parked cars are illegally blocking driveways, please contact our parking enforcement call centre, which operates 24 hours, 7 days a week on 09 355 3553.
- Requests for speed calming measures along Hinemoa Street to address traffic safety, including chicanes and warning lights. Respondents also request that the speed limit be dropped to 40 or 30 km/h along this road. Whilst Hinemoa Street does not meet current criteria for a reduction of the speed limit, we have expanded our final plans to include a raised zebra crossing. The raised crossing will slow traffic speeds and create a safer environment for road users.
- Concern that the proposed zebra crossing causes a pinch point for cyclists due to narrow road lanes. Respondents request that lane widths be extended to 4.2 metres to accommodate cyclists. Changes to our final plans include reducing the width of the traffic islands to 1.8 metres. This will allow for a kerb-to-kerb lane width of 4.2 metres which can safely accommodate cyclists.
- Requests for cycle lanes along Hinemoa Street and through the proposed crossing. Respondents report that many cyclists use this road to access the ferry terminal and also refer to the Sky Path as a facility that will increase cyclist volumes in the area. We also received requests to address other cyclist pinch points caused by traffic islands, parked cars and planted medians along the length of Hinemoa Street.
While these requests are out of scope of this proposal at 100 Hinemoa Street, we will undertake further investigations to expand cycle facilities along the length of the road. We have also amended our plans to increase kerb-to-kerb lane widths which will comfortably accommodate cyclists travelling through the crossing.
- Request that the bus stops on Hinemoa Street be limited to specific times to allow car parking outside these hours. These restrictions will not be incorporated in our final plans because buses continue to use the stops at different times and any restrictions will not be feasible.
- Requests to replicate the bus stop/pedestrian crossing arrangement at Birkenhead Avenue. This arrangement is reported to be successful in retaining on-street parking and meeting the needs of bus users. We investigated the arrangement of the pedestrian crossing on Birkenhead Avenue and have determined that it is not feasible to replicate at Hinemoa Street. There is not enough space between Rugby Road and Glade Place to safely accommodate this arrangement and we cannot move the crossing away from this location as pedestrian counts show that it will be less effective.
- Requests to move bus stops to 100-110 Hinemoa Street and 105 Hinemoa Street respectively in order to establish additional on-street parking. We will not be incorporating these requests in our final plan as it would involve the removal of additional on-street parking.
- A request for adequate street lighting in this area including an assurance that the proposed crossing will meet the requirements of the Auckland Transport Code of Practice (ATCOP) section 19.6.3. While lighting plans were not included in our consultation drawing, we can confirm that lighting facilities will meet the ATCOP standards.
- Requests for more information regarding background research and surveys conducted in preparing this proposal. Our proposal to install a zebra crossing at 100 Hinemoa Street is in response to concerns from local residents who reported that the existing crossing facilities are unsafe for pedestrians. We surveyed the number of pedestrians crossing at different areas on Hinemoa Street and concluded that a zebra crossing was necessary at this specific location. Data relating to vehicle speeds and volumes was also taken into account during this investigation. We concluded that positioning the zebra crossing where most pedestrians are currently attempting to cross Hinemoa Street would create a safer environment for all road users.
We expect to introduce this work in the 2018/2019 financial year, subject to any further changes in design or funding issues. Contractors will issue 48-hour notices to all affected residents prior to construction work.
Last updated 09 February 2018