Auckland Transport (AT) is proposing changes to Kohimarama Road, in St Heliers.
Project status: Consultation.
Project zone: Central
Aucklanders have told us that moving around our city safely and easily is important to them. To help with this we are proposing some improvements to Kohimarama Road, in St Heliers. The proposed changes are located on Kohimarama Road between its two intersections with Whytehead Crescent.
The proposed changes include:
- A northbound/citybound bus lane operating Mon to Fri, 7am to 10am.
- A new signalised pedestrian crossing outside 299 Kohimarama Road.
- Removal of the painted median from 319 Kohimarama Road until 279 Kohimarama Road. The median then gradually tapers back to full size.
- Removal of the right turn bay into the southern end of Whytehead Crescent.
- Pruning of trees along the proposed bus lane to prevent buses striking them.
- Replacement of the existing bus shelter outside 297 Kohimarama Road.
The costs of implementing these changes are estimated to be between $200k to $250k. Please note this is just an estimate as we are early in the project lifecycle.
- The proposal does not require any parking removal.
- The bus lane will:
- be 315m long.
- benefit 27 buses per day during its operating hours (7am to 10am).
- provide faster and more reliable journeys for around (which is the time of day when the benefits will be greatest). This is 13% of city bound people on this stretch of road during this time.
- this project links to the Connected Communities Programme and may also include projects that benefit these bus services, if so, the cumulative travel time savings across these projects could significantly improve bus reliability. This may result in less operational costs as we may be able to reduce the number of buses operating on a bus route while still achieving the same service frequencies (note the are no plans to reduce service frequencies on these bus routes).
- The pedestrian signals provide a safe place to cross a busy road to access bus stops, the reserve, and the surrounding neighbourhood.
Proposed bus lane
- Install a northbound/citybound bus lane on Kohimarama Road, starting just south of the southern intersection with Whytehead Crescent (317 Kohimarama Road) and finishing just north of its northern intersection with Kohimarama Road (279 Kohimarama Road).
- The bus lane will be about 315m long and operate Mon to Fri, 7am to 10am.
- The space for the bus lane will be achieved by removing the painted median along the entire length of the bus lane and removing the right turn bay into Whytehead Crescent.
Why the bus lane is operating 7am to 10am
The lane is proposed to operate during those hours because northbound traffic is heaviest in the AM Peak. In terms of the specific hours of operation, they have been set this way because:
- They are consistent with other special vehicle lanes throughout this part of Auckland. Having consistency of operating hours helps eliminate any confusion for people wishing to use, or avoid using, these lanes.
- Keeping the bus lane operating beyond 9am is likely be beneficial on days where the peak traffic time extends later into the morning, such as when there is an incident on the road network.
- As the population of the area, and Auckland as a whole, grows the duration of the morning peak period is expected to extend out, starting earlier and finishing later. Allowing a little additional time now means that the bus lane hours are less likely to need changing in the future.
Why we are not installing a T2 or T3 lane
- If a T2/T3 lane was created then the additional vehicles using the lane would erode travel time savings for buses and cause delays to general traffic as multi-occupancy vehicles merged back into the general traffic lane.
Would the removal of the painted central median cause safety risks
- Our safety team reviewed the proposed removal of the central median and was satisfied that it does not create significant safety risks for vehicles turning right into or out of properties and side streets.
Proposed signalised pedestrian crossings
- A new signalised pedestrian crossings is proposed outside 299 Kohimarama Road, which will provide a safe place to cross a busy road so pedestrians can more easily access the bus stops, reserve, and surrounding neighbour.
- AT’s design principles require a signalised pedestrian crossing for three or more traffic lanes, the addition of the bus lane therefore triggers the requirement for a signalised pedestrian crossing.
- It is anticipated that the pedestrian crossing will not be triggered that often, and so should have a minimal impact on travel times for general traffic or buses.
- Auckland Transport is taking a Vision Zero approach to road safety. This means we are working to create a more forgiving road network that recognises that we are human and make mistakes. But those mistakes should not mean someone dies or is seriously injured.
- Most the pruning of trees required along the proposed bus lane will be similar to routine maintenance pruning. However, the trees outside 301 and 303/305 Kohimarama Road will require a more significant prune.
Your local knowledge can help us make better decisions, so together we can achieve the best outcomes for your neighbourhood. All feedback is important whether you support the proposal or have concerns with it.
Feedback closed Sunday 25 April 2021.
After we receive your feedback
Now that the public feedback period has closed, the next steps for the project are as follows:
- We will analyse all the feedback received. It’s important that we consider all responses, but this can take a little time. Thanks for your patience and understanding.
- We will investigate ways to address public concerns with the project. We will also assess whether changes suggested for the project are suitable and possible.
- We will present the public feedback and any proposed changes to the project to the Ōrākei Local Board and request their feedback.
- The project team will present the public feedback, any proposed changes to the project, and Ōrākei Local Board’s feedback to the Auckland Transport (AT) Executive Leadership Team (senior managers). The AT Executive Leadership Team will make a decision whether to proceed with the project as originally presented, to proceed with an amended project, or to stop the project.
- A report on public feedback will then be prepared and shared with all people/organisations that provided feedback. The report will include:
- A detailed summary of the feedback received.
- Decisions on the project i.e. whether or not the project will proceed.
- If the project proceeds, the report will outline any changes to the project.