Busi­nesses fear loss of parks

Central Leader - - NEWS - By JOE DAW­SON

A NEW plan to ex­tend the Do­min­ion Rd cy­cle lane may please ped­dlers but has con­cerned some busi­nesses fac­ing a change to the sta­tus quo.

Busi­nesses at the city end of the iconic thor­ough­fare have been told by Auck­land Trans­port an up­grade to the streetscape will see con­tin­u­ous bus lanes down the full length of the road.

The work is part of a $47 mil­lion job set to be­gin in mid-2014 and is aimed at im­prov­ing the flow of buses and safety of cy­clists on the busy route.

For most of the stretch the cy­cle lanes will run on streets par­al­lel to Do­min­ion Rd.

But in a let­ter to busi­nesses, pro­ject leader Joe Schady ex­plains that to pro­vide a cy­cle­way from State High­way 20 all the way to the CBD Auck­land Trans­port will have to use the gap be­tween View Rd and Ian McKin­non Drive for cy­cles.

To make way some of the street park­ing will need to be re­moved be­cause the road is too nar­row to ac­com­mo­date both park­ing and lanes.

The plan is to put 60 minute time re­stric­tions on car parks on Charles and Tawari streets and on the city­bound side of Do­min­ion Rd be­tween them. Elec­tronic signs alert­ing driv­ers to how many parks are avail­able have also been pro­posed.

Cur­rently there are no park­ing re­stric­tions on Charles or Tawari streets.

Park­ing on the other side of Do­min­ion Rd will be re­moved.

The Fac­tory Shop man­ager Robyn Stod­dard says she is wor­ried about where peo­ple who work in sur­round­ing busi­nesses will be able to park. She met Auck­land Trans­port plan­ners last week and re­lated her con­cerns.

‘‘They said there is traf­fic of 150 cy­clists go­ing past ev­ery­day but I only see three to five ev­ery­day,’’ she says.

‘‘I said what about the em­ploy­ers, where are we all go­ing to park? That’s the is­sue we’re deal­ing with – we’re not Den­mark, we’re not Am­s­ter­dam.’’

Kings­land Busi­ness As­so­ci­a­tion boss Chris­tine Fo­ley says she is gen­er­ally sup­port­ive of the move and it will stop ‘‘park and rid­ers’’ driv­ing from outer sub­urbs and catch­ing the bus into town.

She says the Auck­land Coun­cil has a pol­icy to pro­vide park­ing around town cen­tres for vis­i­tors but not for peo­ple plan­ning on stay­ing for a full day.

‘‘I’m keen to see a res­o­lu­tion, es­pe­cially if they have elec­tronic sign boards. I feel that the com­mu­ni­ca­tion as­pect is very im­por­tant,’’ she says. ‘‘The gen­eral idea is to en­cour­age peo­ple to use pub­lic trans­port.’’

Al­bert-Eden Lo­cal Board mem­ber Graeme Easte be­lieves there needs to be a range of park­ing op­tions avail­able.

‘‘I agree we need to fill the lit­tle gaps to make the cy­cle lanes.

‘‘If car park­ing in the main drag must be deleted we need to make sure there is suit­able park­ing in the side streets.’’

He says stays should range from 10 min­utes up to 120.

‘‘Get­ting that mix right is the trick, but oth­er­wise I’m happy with this. Peo­ple who are there for eight hours can park fur­ther away.’’

Photo: JA­SON OXENHAM

Not Am­s­ter­dam: The Fac­tory Shop man­ager Robyn Stod­dard worries about where staff will park if a time limit is added to park­ing on side streets.

Go to cen­tral­leader.co.nz and click on Lat­est Edi­tion to see maps of the pro­posed changes.

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