Nelson has the highest percentage of people walking and cycling to work in New Zealand (18%, 2013 census) – a reflection of both ongoing commitment to investing in their walking and cycling network and a bike-friendly climate. The provision of good quality, well-located cycling facilities has also resulted in over 60% of students at Broadgreen Intermediate School in Stoke regularly cycling to school.
Nelson has a vision of ‘making cycling a safe, convenient and commonplace way of getting around Nelson’ and aims to increase the number of cycling journeys, improve safety, realise health benefits for Nelson residents of all ages, and increase mobility and independence for the ageing population.
The Urban Cycleways Fund will help accelerate the Nelson coastal route which will provide a popular and useful link between Nelson city, along the state highway corridor, to Tahunanui and the airport. This will be supported with cycle education and promotion.
The route and detail of this will be informed by the wider network planning in Nelson.
This 7.2 km stretch of shared paths and the Saltwater Creek bridge will complete the primary routes on Nelson’s cycling network. These facilities will connect residential areas around Tahunanui into Nelson CBD along a scenic coastal route, as well as provide connections to recreational facilities and schools. The route and type of cycleway along with staging, costs and funding will be informed by wider network planning in Nelson over the next 12–18 months.
The Nelson coastal route will provide a safer, off-road route for people in Western Nelson to travel to the CBD by bike. It will separate cyclists from high-volume traffic and will pass within 500m of two schools and within 1km of two others, with a combined total of over 2000 students. The route is expected to attract over 1000 people a day when complete and will connect into the Great Taste trail, part of Nga Haerenga – the New Zealand cycle trail.