Proposal status: Feedback closed 6 April 2021. Last updated 14 June 2021.
Reference number: RTV-334
In March 2021, we updated you on our proposed changes to improve road safety and vehicle access on Bethells Road by installing parking restrictions through “No Stopping on and off Roadway” signs along Bethells Road in Bethells Beach. The changes were in response to complaints from residents regarding access issues caused by parked vehicles on this narrow road. After reviewing all the feedback, we are proceeding with the work as proposed. These works will help support our Vision Zero goal.
The changes we are planning
- Install ‘No Stopping on and off Roadway’ signs near #228 Bethells Road. This will remove approximately 10 legal car parking spaces.
It will take one day to install the new parking restriction signs in good weather conditions.
What happens next
We anticipate the changes will be constructed in July-August 2021. We will be in touch with local residents and business prior to any construction taking place.
Thank you for helping us make better decisions for your neighbourhood, informed by your local knowledge. A summary of your feedback and our responses to community questions is below.
- Concern that the Bethells Beach Traffic Management group had not been properly consulted with on the proposal, as a group of volunteers have been managing the parking situation over the summer.
Thank you for raising our awareness to this community group of volunteers. On the 13th of May an onsite meeting was conducted between the community group, our project lead engineer, and a member of our traffic engineering team. In that meeting community members explained the issues that they experience on Bethells Road, what they have been doing to manage the parking issues, and what they would like for Auckland Transport to do to mitigate those issues. Auckland Transport are aware of the issues raised and feel that this proposal along with increased enforcement will resolve parking and safety issues. The group members were in support of the first stage of the proposal to go through and wanted additional controls to improve safety. It was agreed that Auckland Transport will look into this and will see what more can be done to make the area safer for both road users and pedestrians.
- Concern that the feedback period was too short and over a public holiday, not providing respondents sufficient time to reply.
Consultation has been carried out twice on this proposal, once in December 2020 and again in March 2021. Through the consultation in December issues were raised, addressed, and presented in a new design. This new design was then consulted on in March 2021. With every proposal we give 2 weeks (10 business days) for residents and businesses to provide feedback, and Auckland Transport feel that this sufficient time for external feedback to be collected.
- Concern that there will be no available parking for visitors if all parking is restricted.
The proposal will not restrict all available parking for beach users. We aim to find suitable and safe parking for drivers to use on Bethells Road, and only plan to restrict parking where it creates safety and accessibility issues.
- Query regarding the proposed and planned restrictions on the map, and whether the proposed restrictions will definitely happen?
We will be implementing restrictions in yellow section on the map. Once these restrictions are in place, we will review the area and will install further restrictions where there are access issues. If no access issues are identified, then we will not install these restrictions. The aim of this proposal is to amend Bethells Road parking issues with a balance of parking availability, whilst maintaining safety and access for pedestrians, road users, and residents.
- Query regarding parking restrictions in the yellow are around the tree/in bay, wondering why restrictions are being placed here?
The restrictions proposed are “no stopping on and off roadway” signs, which are to stop vehicles from parking on the road and on the berm. This area has been highlighted as we plan to cover the approximate area where we have proposed the restrictions. The reason for consulting the whole sections is so that we can act quickly is the issue migrates further along the road or gets worse over time.
- Suggestion to use the reserve as an overflow carpark during busy periods.
Auckland Transport has been advised by Auckland Council’s Waitākere Ranges Facilities Manager, that the reserve is used as an over flow car park during the busy, peak summer period at Bethells Beach. However, this is not an advised solution, as the reserve is a valued, open, green space for community use. The area is not designed to be a car park, but to be enjoyed by members of the public.
- Suggestion that there is enough room for vehicles to park off roadways (on the berm) without presenting a safety issue.
Parking off the roadway on Bethells Road is not advised. The proposal aims to provide a safe area on Bethells Road that can be used for vehicle parking, without presenting visibility and safety issues for pedestrians or road users.
- Request for a designated car park to be created for accessing the lake.
Due to budget constraints and limited resources Auckland Transport does not currently have any plans to provide a car park near Bethells Beach.
Site specific questions
- Suggestion to install broken yellow lines as opposed to no stopping signs.
In areas like Bethells Road broken yellow lines are not as effective as signage as they get covered by sand. This results in drivers parking over the broken yellow lines, as road users cannot see them. Auckland Transport have found that signs are a clearer and more effective way of communicating parking restrictions to road users.
- Suggestion to install barriers instead of no stopping signs.
Auckland Transport’s current policy on the installation of road safety crash barriers is that they are generally only erected in areas if there are safety issues, a significant drop, or to prevent vehicles falling into a water hazard. The crash history and latest on this section of Bethells Road does not present the need to install barriers here. Instead, no stopping signs will address the current issues around parking congestion on Bethells Road.
- Suggestion to widen the road in the yellow marked areas (on the external drawing) near the reserve to allow for off road parking. The material in this area is mostly black sand which can be moved using an excavator and roading metal combined with concrete Gobi blocks to establish additional car parks
A road widening project on this section of Bethells Road is not currently a priority for Auckland Transport as there is no significant safety or operational risk posed.
- Request for bollards to be put in place to create safe pedestrian walking tracks from the lake to the beach.
The implementation of bollards on Bethells Road is beyond the scope and budget of this project. This request has been passed onto the Operations team to investigate further traffic calming measures.
- Query that if speeding is the issue on Bethells Road then Auckland Transport should introduce traffic calming measures, such as speed bumps.
Auckland Transport has not identified speeding issues on Bethells Road, as drivers’ speeds are generally within the set speed limit.
- Concern that the residents have taken parking restrictions into their own hands and illegally prevented parking using bollards and spray-painting yellow lines. The bollards in place by residents are not suitable for road use by wider vehicles turning or using the parking spaces.
During out meeting with the community group this was raised and discussed. We have passed this onto an appropriate team to look into.
- Request for a lower speed limit to be enforced to improve pedestrian safety.
On Bethells Road driver speeds are currently reduced by the narrow road, bends in the road, and the single lane bridge. Currently this road is not on our Speed Team’s priority list.
- Request for Bethells Road facilities to be maintained and upgraded.
A request for maintenance on Bethells Road has been raised and passed on to the maintenance team.
Pedestrian safety and access
- Concern over pedestrian safety walking on the informal footpath between the lake and the beach, or from 200 to 234 to access Bethell’s Beach, especially with growing visitor numbers.
The proposal aims to make Bethells Road safer for pedestrians to use as parking restrictions will restrict vehicles parking on the road in unsafe places that reduce pedestrian visibility and safety. A safe walking route from the lake carpark to the beach is beyond this minor parking project, and concerns will be raised with the Traffic Engineering team.
- Query whether AT will have a parking officer out at Bethell’s enforcing the parking restrictions in conjunction with the signage installed.
Installing signage and parking restrictions will be followed up with increased enforcement in the area to ensure that road users are complying with the new restrictions put in place.
- Suggestion to have no stopping signs the whole way down Bethell’s Beach Road to Erangi Road to create access for emergency services vehicles.
Thank you for your suggestion. On-street parking is a valuable and finite public asset and any proposed changes should meet the needs of the wider community. We feel that removing all on-street parking will increase drivers speeds in the area, making it unsafe for pedestrians. Within this proposal we will install “no stopping” signs in appropriate places, so that the road is accessible whilst retaining some on street parking for those accessing the beach.
- Concern that signposts are unsightly.
In order for parking restrictions to be enforceable we need signage to be in place. Auckland Transport aims to keep signage to a minimum while still making restrictions clear to road users. The alterative option to use road markings instead of signs is not advised, as in this area road markings often become covered by sand and are unclear to road users.
Access for emergency services vehicles
- Request for emergency services access to be prioritised.
This proposal aims to prioritise emergency services vehicles access along Bethells Road, while retaining some parking availability for beach users.
- Suggestion for a park and ride service to be introduced.
Park and rides are proposed around major bus and train stations to allow for people to park and catch a train or bus. Near Bethells Beach there is no such facility to warrant a park and ride.
- Query regarding why there are no public transport options for accessing Bethells Beach.
Bus services to Te Henga are not included in the Regional Public Transport Plan (RPTP) which identifies the public transport network that Auckland Transport proposes for the region. This document determines where resources are allocated in the Auckland region. It describes the consulted-on and agreed bus services for Auckland’s public transport network over a 10-year period and sets out the policies and procedures that apply to those services.
This plan details the changes to existing services and all the new services Auckland Transport will introduce in the next 10 years. The plan is updated every three years and is due to be consulted on again in early 2022 when people will have the chance to lobby for a bus service to Te Henga.
We're proposing improvements in your area
In November 2020, we informed the community about our plans to improve road safety and vehicle access by installing parking restrictions through ‘No Stopping On and Off Roadway’ signs along Bethells Road in Bethells. The changes were in response to complaints from residents regarding access issues caused by parked vehicles on this narrow road.
What your neighbourhood told us
Residents told us they were concerned that installing signs in the location we proposed (marked in yellow) might not improve accessibility and safety for road users as vehicles might park elsewhere along Bethells Road and create further safety issues.
How we’re moving forward
After listening to all the feedback, we are proceeding with the proposed changes. These works are scheduled for May 2021 (Proposal drawings page 1 below).
The changes we are proposing:
- We are proposing to install further ‘No Stopping On and Off Roadway’ signs on Bethells Road (marked out in blue on the proposal drawings page 2 below) to address any future issues, should they occur.
We will only install the additional signs in stages, and after conducting investigation, if accessibility and safety becomes an issue. We would like your views on the new proposal.
If you would like to post in your feedback, download and print our feedback form template, fill in your details and send it freepost using the address details on the form.
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.
Bethells: 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 Bethells Road 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).