University to City Link – Wairere to Peachgrove

Posted on by 0 comment

There is a lot on offer in the neighbourhood from the Wairere Drive greenbelt to Peachgrove Rd. This post will start with the Peachgrove shopping centre on the corner of Clyde St, end with a comment on the Ruakura 4-laning and along the way highlight Peachgrove Rd as a destination, which includes the East Street Shops; Countdown supermarket (and Mitre 10 MEGA on Ruakura Rd); Early learning centres, Intermediate and high Schools; and the Shopping Centre on the corner of Clyde St and Peachgrove Rd. The ‘City Centre to University business case April 2021’ also amplifies this on the map on page 16, Figure 2.2.

The business case benefit cost ratios (BCR) are calculated using a transport benefits spreadsheet (page 457). In the business case I found no comment on the new homes along Old Farm Rd and the subsequent benefit to local shops within walking distance of this new population. We also know people will bike to shops along the same route used by pedestrians: this is fine along Old Farm Rd, but without wide paths or separated cycle lanes along Clyde Street there will be conflict with other road users travelling to the Peachgrove shopping centre.

 ‘The Plan serves to increase high densities around high frequency transit corridors’ (p14). This could mean multi-storey buildings replacing stand-alone housing along Clyde Street, which is needed as part of the solution to Hamilton’s housing crisis. Clyde Street nicely links to large employment and education destinations.

Rotterdam Mathenesserweg

Making assumptions on the demand for future shopping centre size or the  cultural feel of the shops along Clyde St is like predicting the next fashion that “occupies the dividing-line between the past and the future” (George Simmel). The image above is of a 1920s development, where for a century the ground floor usage has regularly changed from shops to homes to offices. Based on demand, Clyde Street’s future development should allow what Jane Jacobs called “mixed uses” – housing, restaurants, stores – at street level.

Now to Ruakura road: In 2009 the Ruakura Rd (Peachgrove to Wairere) 4-laning began as a project to improve ‘safety and better cater for current and future traffic as well as buses, cyclists and pedestrians in the area’. By the time it was finished in 2013 the cycle lane had been removed, buses did not get priority, and motor vehicle lanes were widened. The image above shows how, with narrower motor vehicle lanes, cycle lanes can be added to Ruakura Rd.

Related posts

Peachgrove neighbourhood Land use

Hamilton East Neighbourhood – Boundaries and Density

Category: News

University to City Link – Knighton to Wairere – Stage One

Posted on by 0 comment

The University to City Centre route has always been given a high priority in Hamilton’s bike planning. In a 2005 report , ‘the CBD/ University Sector – the highest priority focus in terms of cycling numbers – had already received substantial investment in 1996 – 98, including the country’s first cyclist advanced stop lines’*. Spending zero dollars on biking, then spending something, is apparently ‘substantial investment’. The main outcome was the removal of some on-street car parking and changing some road markings. We now have another opportunity to link the City Centre with the University. Here is a link to ‘City Centre to University business case April 2021’. This post looks at Knighton road to Wairere drive: my image is provided below.

*Roger Boulter Consulting for Hamilton City Council Jan 2005

The above image aims to amplify the local link between shops, future town centre, Innovation Park, Ag Research through to East Street, and the missing link along Knighton Road. It also shows the Ruakura Road urban upgrade being built over the next year. 

The Ruakura Rd project has Hamilton’s first example of a footpath and separate bi-directional bike path. Below is an updated cross-sectional view. You can find more information on the HHC website at tab city/city development/Ruakura.

From here on, I am referring to the ‘City Centre to University business case April 2021’ (link). The Knighton Road/Clyde Street (Greensborough Road to Wairere Drive) route is planned as Stage One and has council funding, but we will not see much progress until we see funding from Waka Kotahi NZTA (p87). Even then, construction is not planned to start until late 2024 (p92).

Eastern Pathways – City Centre to University business case April 2021 – page 70

One of the priorities on Clyde Street is to add a bus lane, with the goal of a 10% to 20% increase in people using public transport (PT) (p68 & p322), because ‘the PT reliability benefits were assessed as 50%’. The improved biking infrastructure is assumed to increase the number of commuter cyclists by between 10% and 33% (p328): the biggest increase is for people biking to places of education, calculated at 20% to 45% (p330). The Investment Objective is to have ‘mode share by PT, walking and cycling increased from 14% to 29% by 2028 and the percentage of short trips (<2km) undertaken by foot increased from 26% to 50%’ (p288).

Eastern Pathways – City Centre to University business case April 2021 – page 225

The cost of the 440m section on Clyde St (Wairere Drive to Knighton Rd) is estimated to be between $1.274k and $1,480k and the 425m section on Knighton Rd is estimated to cost between $1,841k and $2,503k (p337, p382, p420). Comparing this to the $6,040,000 (in 2013 dollars) of 4-laning 400m of Ruakura road from Peachgrove road to Wairere drive (WRLTP 2012-15 p43), the assumed benefit cost ratio (BCR) once the City Centre to University link is complete is between 1.4 and 2.1 (p5) for every $1 invested. The Ruakura road 4-laning project had a BCR below 2 (WRLTP 2012-15 p22). Most importantly, over the past 5 years there has been an average of 1.6 annual deaths and serious injuries between the City Centre and University (p131). The Investment objective is that ‘Hamilton’s transport system is safer … with an overarching goal of zero deaths and serious injuries’ (p288).

Waikato Regional Land Transport 2012/13-2014/15 (WRLTP 2012-15).

Category: News