Applying to install bollards Applying to install bollards

Installing bollards is one of the options that may be available to you if you're looking to protect your business against ram raids. On this page you'll learn how you can determine if bollards are the right protective measure for you and your business, and how to apply with Auckland Transport to get approval to install them.

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Why do I need to apply with Auckland Transport to install bollards?

Public footpaths are an asset shared by all Aucklanders. They often sit above utilities like power cables, water pipes, and gas mains that we all use. Auckland Transport is responsible for looking after our footpaths and the assets underneath them. It's our job to make sure that any work done on the footpaths, including installing bollards, is done safely. You need to complete a Bollard Installation Application before installing bollards so we can help you take all the right steps to keep pedestrians and workers safe while they're being installed, and ensure that once the work is complete, the footpath is safe and accessible to everyone who needs to use it.

Can I install bollards?

Bollards can be an effective physical and psychological deterrent against ram raids, however, there are some situations where bollards cannot be installed.

To determine if bollards are an option for you and your business you need to:

1. Check if the footpath is at least 2.3m wide:
Bollards must be installed within 500mm of your storefront and leave at least 1.8m of footpath clear for pedestrian access. If your footpath is less than 2.3m wide you will not be able to install bollards.

Hand-drawn sketch showing the 2.3m distance required for a footpath to allow bollards to be installed.

2. Check that no underground utilities will be impacted by your bollards:
Regardless of the type of bollards you want to install, you must check for underground utilities in the area.  Damage to underground utilities like power cables, water pipes, and gas mains during the installation of bollards, or as a result of a ram raid, are a huge safety risk to the public. If there are any underground utility assets within 500mm of your storefront, you will not be able to install bollards. If there are any underground utilities within 1m from your storefront, you and the people installing your bollards need to know exactly where they are so they can work around them safely. You may also need a representative from the utility company present during installation to monitor the process.

Hand-drawn sketch showing a scene above the road and then the underground utility assets beneath the road.

To check for underground utilities:

1. Visit the before U dig website
2. Click "New Users" and fill out your information to register an account
3. Click the "Validate your email address" link in the confirmation email you receive
4. Click "Submit an Enquiry" on the before U dig website
5. Login to your account
6. Click "New Job" and fill out the relevant information about the work (you can leave the Corridor Access Requests (CAR) section of the online form blank)
7. Within 48 hours of submitting your job in before U dig, you will receive emails from each relevant utility owner (e.g. Vector, Watercare, Chorus) with plans showing any underground utilities in the area where you are planning to install bollards.
8. If there are utilities in the area and you want to proceed with installing bollards, we recommend contacting one of the Certified Locators listed on the before U dig website to come and assess your site for a more accurate picture of where the utilities are and whether bollards can be installed safely.

If you need help completing the before U dig process or understanding the plans, you can reach out to us at

3. Obtain permission from the property owner to install the bollards:
If you are not the property owner, you need to obtain permission from the property owner to install bollards. You will need to provide proof of this permission in writing when you submit your Bollard Installation Application. If the property owner does not give their permission, you will not be able to install bollards.

My site is suitable for bollards, what else do I need to consider?

If your footpath is wide enough, you've got space to work without risking damage to underground utilities, and the property owner has given their permission, you can start to think about the specific design and placement of your bollards. You will need to consider:

Keeping workers, pedestrians, cyclists, and other road users are safe while bollards are being installed is absolutely crucial. If you decide to install bollards, you will be required to provide something called a Traffic Management Plan with your application. This is a plan that explains the measures that will be taken during any road work to make sure everyone involved and impacted is kept safe. Auckland Transport does not charge for Bollard Installation Applications, however, you will need to contract a registered Traffic Management Designer to produce your Traffic Management Plan at your own cost.

Bollard type:
There are a wide range of different bollards available on the market but the two main factors you need to decide on are:

  1. Fixed vs removable
    Fixed bollards are appropriate for most uses, however if you need to remove bollards temporarily to allow access for things like loading zones, removable bollards might be right for you.
  2. In-ground vs surface mounted
    In- ground bollards are partially sunk into the ground. They are stronger than surface mounted bollards because they can better transfer the force of a vehicle impact into the ground. Surface mounted bollards are easier to install as they don't require cutting into the concrete. However, they are only as strong as the bolts that hold them in place.

Number and placement of bollards:
You'll need to decide how many bollards you want and how far apart to place them. If the space between your bollards is too wide, vehicles will be able to fit between. However, it must be at least 1.2m around the entranceway to meet accessibility standards so that people, including those using mobility devices or prams, can enter safely.

Impact on pedestrians:
While they can be a great way to protect your business, bollards also have an impact on pedestrians using the footpath. Bollards are a potential trip hazard so it's important they are clearly visible to pedestrians. They need to be 900-1200mm high and should be a colour that contrasts with the environment. It can be helpful to include a reflective strip at the top of the bollards for increased visibility. You should also consider the impact your bollards might have on visually impaired people, people using mobility devices, or people pushing prams.

Step 1. Apply to install bollards

Apply to install bollards

Please include:

  • The address of the business where you want to install bollards.
  • Confirmation you have completed the 'before U dig' process, and copies of any underground utilities plans you received in response (e.g. plans from Watercare, Vector, or Chorus).
  • Written permission from the property owner to install bollards.
  • The name of the company you will be contracting to provide and install the bollards.
  • An image of the type of bollards you want to install (e.g. a screenshot from the manufacturer's website).
  • Dimensions of the bollards (height above ground, depth below ground, and diameter).
  • A site plan showing a bird's eye view of your business and the intended location of the bollards. This can be drawn by hand or digitally over the top of Google maps, but should include:
    • the distance between the storefront and the bollards (bollards must be within 500mm of the storefront)
    • the distance between the bollards and the curb (there must be at least 1.8m clearance between the bollards and the curb)
    • the distance between bollards (this must be at least 1.2m around entranceways).

Hand drawn diagram with the required dimensions on a footpath, in between a store front and the road. The bollards should have 2000mm between them and the road, be spaced 1200mm apart and have 400mm between the bollards and the store front.

Image: Example site plan.

Once your bollards are installed, AT will inspect them to make sure that what you installed matches the information in your application, and that the site is left safe for all footpath users.

If there's anything you're not sure about, or you just want to ask a question, don't hesitate to get in touch with us at

Step 2. Sign an Encroachment Approval Agreement

We will use the information you provide with your application to produce a document called an Encroachment Approval Agreement. We will send a copy of the Encroachment Approval Agreement to the property owner for them to sign agreeing to the conditions under which Auckland Transport agrees to bollards being installed on public footpath.

These conditions include:

  • That the contactor installing the bollards on your behalf needs to obtain a Corridor Access Request (CAR) approval. You can find out what this involves under 'Step 3. Submit a safety plan for installation'.
  • That the bollards will match the specifications given in your application.
  • That the property owner is responsible for the ongoing maintenance of the bollards once installed.

Step 3. Submit a safety plan for installation

Once the property owner has signed the Encroachment Approval Agreement, your bollard installation company will need to obtain Corridor Access Request (CAR) approval as specified in the Agreement. While applying for a Corridor Access Request for other types of roadworks can be complicated, for Bollard Installation Applications, all we require is a simple safety plan explaining how the installers will keep pedestrians safe during installation.

The safety plan your bollard installation company needs to provide should include:

  • The name and contact phone number of the key contact at your installation company.
  • A site plan showing where any cones will be placed to prevent pedestrian access during installation. This can be a simple screenshot of Google Maps or Google Street View with the cones drawn over the top.
  • A written explanation of any other measures they will take to keep pedestrians safe during installation including:
    • What time they plan to do the work. Consider choosing work times outside of business hours when streets are likely to be quieter.
    • How they will protect pedestrians from any debris such as sawdust while the holes for the bollards are being cut. For example, placing a simple hoarding across the front of the area where the bollards will be installed.
    • Whether there will be a spotter present to support pedestrians passing through. This may be a good idea if the footpath is narrowed significantly by cones or other equipment.

Your bollard installation company can email this information to

We will support them to submit a Corridor Access Request with the information they provide and will let both you and the bollard installation company know when this has been approved and installation can go ahead.

Step 4. Install your bollards

Once the safety plan provided to us by your bollard installation company has been approved, we will let you know that you can go ahead with installing your bollards.

Step 5. Compliance check

Once your bollards are in place, our Compliance team will visit your site to check they have been installed as specified in your application and that the surrounding area is still safe and accessible to pedestrians.

Is there any financial support available?

You may have heard that the government is providing funding to help protect small businesses against ram raids. This funding currently sits with New Zealand Police who are establishing a Small Crimes Prevention Fund. To find out whether there is any financial support available to you, we recommend contacting your business association or the New Zealand Police. Auckland Transport does not have access to funding for private bollards, however we do process Bollard Installation Applications free of charge.

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