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.
  2. Check that no underground utilities will be impacted by your bollards:
    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 underground utilities further than 500mm from your storefront, you and the people installing your bollards need to know exactly where they are so they can work around them safely.

    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:

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. Surface mounted bollards are the best option if there are underground utilities nearby.

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 them so it's important to consider this when figuring out how many bollards you need.

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.

How do I apply to install bollards?

The first step is to contact us at with your enquiry so we can guide you through the process.

It's helpful if you can include the following information in your email:

  • Location of the business where you want to install bollards
  • The number and type of bollards you want to install
  • The rough placement of your bollards
  • If you have completed the before U dig process, were there any underground utilities identified?
  • Do you own the property? If not, do you have permission from the property owner to install bollards?

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

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.