Proposal status: Closed
Reference number: MIP2021-005
In August 2022, we proposed to install a pedestrian crossing across Virginia Avenue East for pedestrians accessing the Ian McKinnon Drive footbridge. The proposal was created in response to being asked by the community and the Waitematā Local Board, who represent your community, to make these changes. After reviewing all the feedback, we are proceeding with the work as proposed. These works will help support our Vision Zero goal.
What happens next
This project is dependent on funding. This year, funding has been reduced so we cannot continue to construction in 2022. We are unable to provide a precise construction date but are aiming for construction to be between July 2023 and June 2024. We’ll write to you again next year with more detail about the commencement of works.
Thank you for helping us make better decisions for your neighbourhood, informed by your local knowledge. Some residents said that the community would benefit from this change, as it would improve pedestrian and cycle safety, especially for small children using the footbridge on their way to and from the day care and school. It was also reported that some motorists turn too fast, and this would help keep them slow.
A summary of your feedback and our responses to community questions is below.
- Suggestion that the changes are not justified as pedestrian demand is too low, not much traffic travels down this road and drivers go slow around the blind corner.
The aim of the proposal is to provide a safe crossing that is more accessible, particularly for people with mobility scooters, wheelchairs, and prams.
- Suggestion that money could be better spent on something else.
This project was ranked and scored against other projects in the Auckland region. Several factors such as safety, accessibility, project costs and available funding are considered when scoring the projects. This project scored high enough for it to be selected for investigation this year.
- Concern about losing two parking spaces as there is not enough parking in the area.
The loss of parking spaces has been minimised as much as possible. The removal of two parking spaces is required to provide the required visibility for pedestrians and approaching drivers.
- Concern that the crossing will increase noise pollution, raise emissions, and increase local air pollution due to acceleration and deceleration.
Vehicle speeds are generally low in the area due to the sharp bend and the short distance to the intersection with Charlotte Street. Therefore, the raised crossing is unlikely to cause motorists to slow down and abruptly speed up. The volume of traffic along the street is also relatively low, so the increase in noise and emissions is very minimal.
- Concern that the raised crossing will increase congestion during construction.
There will be some disruption and removal of parking along Virginia Avenue East during construction. However, this will only be for a short period of time.
- How does this impact emergency service drivers as they have to slow down to navigate the bump?
The changes would have little impact on emergency services as Virginia Avenue East as it is not a major route for emergency services. Also, emergency vehicles would be travelling relatively slow on the 90-degree bend and the Charlotte Street intersection. Therefore, the raised crossing would have little impact on emergency services.
- Where does the flowing stormwater go with this new crossing?
Stormwater will be designed during the next phase of this project. Initial investigations indicate that catch pits can be provided within Virginia Avenue East and connect to the existing stormwater system.
- Concern that the crossing does not match up with either of the two existing paths.
A new footpath will be constructed between the crossing and the existing eastern path. To maximise the accessibility of the crossing, it was not possible to connect the crossing with the eastern path directly. This is because it would require reconstructing the footpath to the bridge which would increase its steepness over a long length. Additionally, connecting the crossing to the western path would require people to use steps to the bridge, which is not appropriate for all users. Therefore, the proposed location maximises the accessibility of the crossing.
- Suggestion that a crossing would be better at the intersection of Virginia Ave East and Charlotte Street, where vehicles slow down already, and parking is not present.
A crossing at the intersection was considered, but this would not be well aligned for pedestrians coming off the footbridge wanting to walk west along Virginia Avenue East. The proposed crossing point better serves pedestrians walking to the east and to the west.
- Suggestion that you cannot travel 25km/h which is indicated on the proposed sign.
The speed on the sign is an advisory maximum speed which is consistent with the design of the raised crossing.
- Suggestion that the kerb ramps already make it comfortable for people with prams and wheelchairs so there's no problem with that currently.
The existing kerb ramp on the northern side of Virginia Avenue East has a gradient which is not wheelchair friendly as it could result in a wheelchair toppling over. There is currently no ramp on the southern side of the road, only the driveway for the apartments. Whilst vehicle movements to and from the apartments are low, this is an undesirable arrangement. The changes will provide a more accessible facility for all users. It will also remove the conflict with vehicles entering and exiting the apartments.
- How many accidents have been at this location?
There have been no police reported crashes near the proposed crossing in the past 5 years between 2017 and 2022. We do not want to wait for an incident to happen before we act, we want to avoid them from happening. We also want to build a more forgiving system that protects people from death and serious injury in the event of a crash as we acknowledge that as people, we all make mistakes.
- Concern that the footpath down both sides of the street is falling apart.
We cannot undertake footpath maintenance as part of this project, but this will be investigated for the future.
- Concern that there are streetlights located in the middle of the footpath which force people to walk onto the road causing a safety issue.
There is one streetlight on the northern side of Virginia Avenue East which is located at the back of the footpath. And there are currently no streetlights along the southern footpath between Charlotte Street and the bend in the road. Streetlighting for this crossing would be positioned so that it does not negatively impact the footpaths.
- Suggestion that the secondary path down to the bridge should be removed so only one pathway is used.
The secondary path provides a facility for pedestrians who are wanting to use the stairs to walk to the west along Virginia Avenue East.
- Suggestion for the new footpath to be built within the roadway rather than taking out the trees as this will improve visibility of the walkway.
We did consider constructing the footpath within the roadway. However, this would have increased the number of parking spaces to be removed and the steepness of the footpath would not have been suitable for all pedestrians. For these reasons, this option was not chosen.
- Suggestion to have broken yellow lines painted over the western pathway entrance so cars stop blocking it.
Painting these broken yellow lines would result in the loss of more parking spaces. We want to minimise the loss of parking spaces as much as possible.
- Suggestion that tree removal isn't required.
All possible measures will be taken to retain the trees and to only trim the vegetation. But if tree removal is required, the trees will be relocated to another location.
Virginia Ave East and Charlotte Street intersection
- Suggestion to paint broken yellow lines on New North Road at the end of Virginia Ave East and Charlotte Street or to make it a no stopping area.
There are existing broken yellow lines painted at the intersections of Virginia Avenue East and Charlotte Street with New North Road to stop vehicles from parking there.
- Suggestion to put a give way sign at the Virginia Ave East and Charlotte Street intersection.
This area has low traffic volumes and most drivers who travel through the intersection are residents and regular visitors. They would already be aware of the priority at the intersection. Therefore, we don’t think a give way sign is necessary.
- Suggestion to put more one-way signage at the intersection of Fleet Street, Charlotte Street and Virginia Avenue East as people have gone the wrong way on Charlotte Street.
There is an existing ‘no entry’ sign and road markings at the Virginia Avenue East exit to indicate to drivers that Virginia Avenue East is a one-way street.
We're proposing improvements in your area
We are proposing to:
- Install a pedestrian crossing on top of a flat, wide speed bump between 37 and 43 Virginia Avenue East. This speed bump would be raised to the height of the footpath. This would remove 2 parking spaces.
- Build a footpath connecting the crossing and the Ian McKinnon Drive footbridge. This may result in the relocation of some small trees.
- Install tactile pavers, which are yellow guidance paving markers that help visually impaired people to find their way to the crossing and safely cross the road.
- Install road markings and signage to support the crossing.
We would like to work with you to deliver safer roads in your neighbourhood. We received requests from the community and the Waitemata Local Board to improve pedestrian facilities at this location.
Currently, pedestrians walking between Virginia Avenue East and the Ian McKinnon Drive footbridge must cross the road between parked vehicles. This results in poor visibility between pedestrians and drivers.
The proposed crossing would provide a safer, accessible crossing for pedestrians to use, as it would:
- Slow approaching drivers to a safe speed.
- Make it easier for drivers to see people crossing the road.
- Make it more comfortable for everyone, including people with prams and wheelchairs, to cross the road as the crossing is flush with the footpath.
The new footpath would:
- Provide a safer space for people to wait before crossing the road.
- Make the path to the Ian McKinnon Drive footbridge more visible.
- Make it more comfortable to walk between Virginia Avenue East and the Ian McKinnon Drive footbridge.
What happens next
- We’ll listen to all the feedback we receive, and then decide the best way to move forward.
- We’ll post the outcome of this proposal and a summary of community feedback on this webpage.
- We can email you the proposal outcome as soon as it’s ready – just select that option when you fill in the survey.
This proposal is supported with funding from the Auckland regional fuel tax.
Eden Terrace: Safe with us
Auckland Transport cares for your safety. We want to make our roads safe for everyone, people walking and cycling, especially for our kids and senior citizens and people driving. Projects like this one around Virginia Avenue East are another step towards our goal of achieving no deaths or serious injuries on our roads. We are guided by the Vision Zero approach to transport safety, which prioritises human safety over other measures (like minor time saving).