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Construction starts on St Lukes cycleway safety improvements

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Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency is starting work on safety improvements on one of Auckland’s busiest cycleway road crossings this Friday, 24 January.

The main safety improvement is the construction of raised tables at three pedestrian crossings on the St Lukes Road bridge over State Highway 16. The crossings include where the busy Northwestern Cycleway crosses St Lukes Road and connects with the St Lukes Cycleway. 

The Transport Agency has worked with Auckland Transport and Bike Auckland to develop a design that improves safety for people on foot and on bikes by connecting the local cycle network with schools and community facilities such as the local parks and reserves.

NZ Transport Agency Senior Manager Project Delivery, Andrew Thackwray says the raised crossings are designed to slow down traffic and improve safety, especially for people crossing the motorway on and off ramps.

“Raised crossings are a Safe System improvement that make roads safer for people on foot and on bikes. The Safe System approach aims for a more forgiving road network that takes human fallibility and vulnerability into account.”

The improvements form a missing link in the cycle network, safely connecting St Lukes Road to the Northwestern Cycleway and Great North Road, and to places like the Auckland Zoo, MOTAT, Western Springs Park and Western Springs College. They also deliver a safer west-east crossing for north-western cycleway users.

“Safety for all road users, including people on foot on and bikes, is a priority for the Transport Agency. These upgrades will significantly improve safety at this busy intersection, as well as the Duncan MacLean intersection, by slowing traffic down.”

Other safety improvements include a Copenhagen-style raised bike lane southbound from the bridge to Duncan MacLean Link and a raised table crossing where the bike lane crosses Duncan Maclean Link. There will be cycle phasing at the controlled crossings, improved lighting and the traffic island by the westbound motorway off-ramp will be extended.

These safety improvements will allow the eastern lane of the St Lukes overbridge, closed two years ago due to safety concerns, to be reopened to cars.

Mr Thackwray says the $1.5m project is expected to take about six weeks, with crews working both day and night shifts to minimise disruption for residents, road users, cyclists and pedestrians.

The work will require temporary road closures to create a safe work area for the construction crews. The first closure, starting from 9pm on Friday 24 January, will stop vehicles turning left on to St Lukes Road from the SH16 motorway off-ramp. There will be a signposted detour. 

There is no detour for cyclists on the Northwestern Cycleway, but a traffic controller will be dedicated to helping cyclists get safely through the works for the duration of the project. Temporary ramps will be in place as required.

There will be limited access for turning vehicles between St Lukes Road and Duncan Maclean Link.

“We apologise in advance for any night-time disturbance from our machinery and lights. Our crews will work as quietly and efficiently as possible to make these safety improvements.”

For more on the St Lukes Cycleway Safety Improvements, see www.nzta.govt.nz/st-lukes-cycleway-safety-improvements

*See more about the Safe System approach at www.saferjourneys.govt.nz/about-safer-journeys/the-safe-system-approach(external link)

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