Category Archives: News

Avalon Dr – Te Rapa loop

Posted on by 0 comment

The Avalon–Te Rapa loop is flat, and the links to Jobs, schools, parks and retail from it are flat. You do not need the assistance of an E-bike and most people could travel this loop on a normal pushbike. If the loop felt safe to bike, people could cycle to access everything they could need.

Inside the Avalon-Te Rapa loop there are over 11,500 jobs*, and a few hundred metres outside the loop there are over 1,500 jobs and 4,580 dwellings housing 12,800** people. The Avalon Dr–Te Rapa loops a Business District.

* Job data from Hamilton City Council / your city / our city’s economy / economic data and reports   

** Dwelling and Population data from 2018 Census (Saint Andrews West, Forest Lake, Nawton East, Crawshaw)

Missing links in Avalon – Te Rapa Loop

Linking Wairere drive to rail Station to Wintec Rotokauri

Avalon Drive South to Norton School-Mall Walking / Biking

Linking Avalon Drive North to Dominion Road Walking / Biking

Avalon Drive 2012 improvements

Category: News

Avalon Drive 2012 improvements

Posted on by 1 comment

After the State Highway One bypass of Avalon Drive was built, the now local Avalon Drive was changed to lower the design speed from 60 km/hr to 50 km/hr and improve safety near intersections. The improvements worked well for motor vehicles and from a bird’s-eye view it seemed that people walking and cycling had a place. Sadly, the quality was poor and the number of crossings for pedestrians was Low. Avalon Drive is a very mixed use neighbourhood (Link), which is in need of a rebuild to allow better pedestrian and biking access.

A post on the Livingstone intersection had already been written (link) before reviewing these drawings. As we can see below, crossings for pedestrians were proposed for the Livingstone roundabout, but sadly the proposed crossings were not provided.

A good bike lane is over 2 metres wide. The quality for biking along Avalon Drive is poor by design. Biking is a social activity: in the same way that a car passenger will sit beside the driver, people biking together like to bike side by side, as do people walking together. People also bike at different speeds, and cycle lanes narrower than 2.0m are not good because they are just not wide enough to allow faster cyclists to pass another person on a bike without moving outside the bike lane into harm’s way. It gets worse along Avalon Drive, as the cycle lane reduces to a narrow shared path in places.

What makes this sadder is that this poor quality was by design. There was never a plan to provide a good width for people biking, or space for shared paths.

People new to biking would not feel safe sharing the road with cars moving at 50 km/hr. The starting point for improving biking along Avalon Drive would be to mark a continuous 2-metre wide route on both sides of Avalon Drive. This could safely be a mix of on-road and off-road if the motor vehicle traffic speed limit was close to the speed a bicycle travels at.

Shared path widths depend on the volumes of different types of users and the speed differentials between users. Shared paths have their place, but success involves more people walking and biking, and thus needs separate bike and foot paths. Avalon Drive needs a rebuild design to achieve a successful mode shift from motor cars to walking and biking.    

Category: News