Auckland Transport

Nelson Street Cycleway

Nelson Street Cycleway will link the Upper Queen Street bridge to Quay Street via a shared path and separated cycle lanes. The cycleway will be built in 3 phases.


Project status:
Phase 1: Complete.
Phase 2: Construction.
Phase 3: Consultation closed 1 October 2017.

Project zone: Central.


Project overview


Nelson Street Cycleway will form a crucial part of the cycle network in Auckland, connecting the shared off-road pedestrian and cycling path on Upper Queen Street to the waterfront at Quay Street.

The cycleway is a mixture of shared pedestrian and cycling paths, cycle path and one-way and two-way on-road cycle lanes separated from the general traffic by raised buffer islands.

Phases and milestones

  • Phase 1: Link from Upper Queen Street to Nelson Street via Canada Street; new bridge to the old Nelson Street off-ramp. Opened 3 December 2015.
  • Phase 2: Cycleway running on both sides of Nelson Street from Victoria Street West to Fanshawe Street and on Market Place to Pakenham Street East. The phase also includes a cycling facility along Pitt Street between Beresford Square and Hobson Street. Consultation on design closed 5 October 2015. Now under construction.
  • Phase 3 (also part of the Westhaven to City cycle route): Completing the cycleway and the central city cycle loop. Design proposes a cycleway along Market Place, Customs Street West, and the western side of Lower Hobson Street with a connection to the Quay Street Cycleway. Feedback has been received and consultation is now closed.

Route map

See a route map of the cycleway phases (PDF 211KB)

Benefits

  • Links with the Northwestern cycle route, Grafton Gully and the waterfront, creating a walking and cycling spine along the western side of the CBD.
  • Provides a key transport route into and around the city, part of a new network of cycleways planned for the city centre.
  • Helps make urban cycling a safer and more attractive transport choice.
  • Supports increased numbers of people choosing to cycle to the city for work, education or recreation activities (increasingly important due to the major improvements proposed in the city in the coming years).
  • Provides thousands of local residents with better travel options within the city (over the last decade, Auckland's CBD has become one of the most densely populated parts of the country).
  • Suitable for cyclists with a variety of confidence levels.

Funding

Nelson Street Cycleway has funding from the Government through the Urban Cycleways Programme (UCP) and is being jointly delivered by the NZ Transport Agency, Auckland Council, and Auckland Transport (AT).

Find out more about AT's cycling and walking programme.


Phase 1: Upper Queen Street to Nelson Street link and new bridge

Phase 1 links Upper Queen Street to Nelson Street via Canada Street and a new bridge to the old Nelson Street off-ramp. The cycleway continues down the west side of Nelson Street to its intersection with Victoria Street.

The new bridge and off-ramp are exclusively for pedestrians and cyclists.

Phase 1 of the cycleway (including Te Ara i Whiti - the Lightpath) opened on 3 December 2015.


Phase 2: Nelson Street to Quay Street and Beresford Square to Hobson Street

Construction

Construction started in June 2017 and we expect to be finished by late 2017. 

Work will be carried out on:

  • Nelson Street - both sides, from Victoria Street West to Fanshawe Street. This includes changes to the Nelson Street / Fanshawe Street / Market Place / Sturdee Street intersection.
  • Market Place - both sides, to Pakenham Street East.
  • Pitt Street - along the western side, from Beresford Square to Hopetoun Street. There will also be changes to the Pitt Street / Vincent Street / Hopetoun Street intersection as well as changes to street lighting on both sides of Pitt Street.

Generally hours of work are between 7am and 7pm, Monday to Saturday. Any work required for Sunday or during the night will be notified in advance.

Parking may be temporarily removed from some locations during construction.

Pitt Street/Beresford Square to Hobson Street

This section connects the Nelson Street cycleway with future cycle facilities planned for Karangahape Rd.

  • At this stage, the cycleway stops/starts at Beresford Square and will join into the future Karangahape Rd facility. The cycleway is on the west side of Pitt Street.
  • Between Beresford Square and Hopetoun Street, the facilities are a shared path.
  • At the intersection of Pitt Street and Hopetoun Street, we are removing the left turn slip lane from Pitt to Hopetoun Street to get better amenity for pedestrians and cyclists crossing the road.
  • After this intersection, between Hopetoun Street and Hobson Street, a shared path is proposed on the west side of Pitt Street.
  • On the west side of Pitt Street, 3 car parks will be removed. 
  • On the east side of Pitt Street, between Greys Ave and Vincent Street, 7 car parks will be removed to accommodate a new bus stop.

Nelson Street from Victoria Street to Pakenham Street East on Market Place

This section starts at the intersection of Victoria Street West, where it ties into the phase 1 of the cycleway, and ends at Market Place just after the Pakenham Street East intersection.

Nelson street phase 2 street design

Image: Artist's impression of Nelson Street when phase 2 is finished.

  • There will be a combination of on-road cycleways with concrete separators/ rubber speed humps, and delineated cycle path and shared path.
  • The cycleway along the western kerbline will be for cyclists riding northbound (downhill). The cycleway along the eastern kerbline will be for cyclists riding southbound (uphill).
  • To accommodate the cycleway and balance the needs of different users, changes to on-street parking will be required. Eleven parking spaces are removed on the west side and nine on the east side. A car share car park is being moved from the west side to Wyndham St. One loading zone on the west side is removed and one retained near the intersection with Victoria Street.
  • At the Nelson Street / Fanshawe Street intersection, in the northbound direction, a straight through cycle lane will be provided across the intersection. The existing left turn slip lanes and pedestrian refuge island will be removed. The footpath at the southwest corner of this intersection is being built out towards the carriageway to maximise space for pedestrians waiting to cross the intersection. In the southbound direction, people on bikes will cross the intersection using a single independent cyclist crossing onto a cycle ramp at the corner of Fanshawe Street and Nelson Street.
  • To provide room for cycleways on both sides of Market Place, one right turn lane from Market Place to Fanshawe Street will be removed. A new raised speed table will be constructed at the intersection of Market Place and Pakenham Street East to lower the speed environment and enhance the pedestrian environment. Two existing angled car parks in Pakenham St East will be removed. The loading zone in Market Place (between Fanshawe and Pakenham St East) will be removed. A loading zone will be provided in Pakenham St East between Market Place and Sturdee Street.

Feedback report

Public feedback on phase 2 was open from 10 September to 5 October 2015. 

We received 196 feedback submissions in total. The design was carefully considered and refined.

Download the Phase 2 feedback report (PDF 688KB)


Phase 3: Nelson Street to Quay Street

We propose installing a bi-directional cycleway from Nelson Street to Quay Street to complete the link between the Nelson Street and Quay Street cycleways and provide a connection to section 1 of the Westhaven to City cycle route.

Public feedback on the proposed design for phase 3 was open from 4 September to 1 October 2017. 

Route

The proposed route travels along the western side of Market Place, the northern side of Customs Street West and then the western side of Lower Hobson Street, where it connects to the Quay Street Cycleway.

Sturdee Street and the eastern side of Lower Hobson Street were considered as possible routes during the early planning stages, but were discounted for reasons including insufficient road width, and the number of traffic signals along the route slowing cyclists. 

Design

We propose installing a bi-directional cycleway on one side of the road, as it occupies less road space and allows us to retain more space for parking and other uses.

We looked at 4-6 potential configurations on each of the 3 streets to determine the best design, including locating the cycleway on the southern/eastern side of the road. We evaluated the different layouts against a range of criteria, which balanced the needs of people in cars (including delivery people and taxis) with creating a safe facility that will encourage people to cycle.

Market Place (between Pakenham Street East and Customs Street West)

To create space for the cycleway and retain parking, we wanted to change Market Place to 1-way northbound traffic movement only.

The cycleway would be located on the western side of the road at road level, separated from traffic by raised buffer islands and at driveway crossings by rubber speed humps.

Angle parking on the western side of the road would be removed, and parking on the eastern side would change from parallel to angle parking. This rearrangement minimises the loss of parking on Market Place to only two spaces.

Trees along Market Place would be retained.

See the Market Place design plan for more detail of proposed changes (PDF 1.3MB)

Cross section Market Place

Image: Proposed new road layout of Market Place (looking north).

Customs Street West (between Market Place and Lower Hobson Street)

We proposed locating the cycleway on the northern side of the road and separating it from traffic by raising it level with the existing footpath.

So deliveries are not impaired, we would ensure surfaces are flush by using painted and/or textured surfaces to delineate walking and cycling areas.

A buffer zone in the first 1.2m of footpath would provide a landing area for deliveries.

A 41m loading zone (which is greater than the current loading allocation) would be installed adjacent to the footpath.

Delivery people and other users would need to cross the space allocated for cyclists, and care would need to be taken while everyone adjusts to the new arrangement.

Some trees may need to be removed or relocated.

Four car parks on the north side of the road would be removed, and the angle parking on the south side would change to parallel. Overall, the number of car parks would reduce by 16; however, this would be offset by large car parking buildings in the area.

See the Customs Street West design plan for more detail of proposed changes (PDF 1.3MB)

Cross section Customs Street West

Image: Proposed new road layout for Customs Street West (looking east).

Lower Hobson Street (between Customs Street West and Quay Street)

We propose locating the cycleway on the western side of the road and separating it from traffic by raising it level with the footpath.

So deliveries are not impaired, we would ensure surfaces are flush by using painted and/or textured surfaces to delineate walking and cycling areas.

The tour coach parking would be moved to Customs Street West. The Explorer Bus would be relocated outside of the project area.

The loading zone and taxi stand would shift to the outside edge of the cycleway, and operation would be restricted to between 7pm and 7am. This would mean that, during the day, we maintained 2 northbound traffic lanes.

For daytime loading activities, we propose a number of options, including re-allocating 7 car parking spaces to 5 Loading Zone spaces under the adjacent flyover for smaller delivery vehicles and providing a 20.5m loading zone on the eastern side of Lower Hobson Street. The design plan shows 4 options.

A raised crossing at the traffic lights where Customs Street West meets Lower Hobson Street would provide flush access between the new loading zones and the western side of Lower Hobson Street.

See the Lower Hobson Street design plan for more detail of proposed changes (PDF 1.3MB)

Cross section Lower-Hobson Street

Image: Proposed new road layout for Lower Hobson Street (looking north).

Improvements for pedestrians

Our proposal included treatments to create a safer and more enjoyable environment for pedestrians, including

  • Raised tables at the Market Place-Pakenham Street East and Market Place-Customs Street West intersections to slow speed and provide an easier (flush) crossing for pedestrians.
  • 2 new zebra crossings (one on Customs Street West, near the Market Place intersection, and one on Market Place by Pakenham Street East).
  • Kerb build-outs on Pakenham Street East to slow traffic and reduce crossing distances.
  • Changes to how the streets operate and to parking, taxi, loading, and bus parking arrangements are necessary in places to accommodate the cycleway and other improvements.

Changes to loading zones

We understand the importance of loading zones to businesses and delivery services. Through careful design and by establishing new loading areas, we had sought to ensure we supported ongoing servicing of the area. 

We have been in contact with some of the local businesses and several delivery companies to gain an understanding of how the area operates from a loading/servicing perspective and have used this information to inform our design.

Nelson Street Phase 3 artists impression

Image: Artist's impression of the intersection of Customs Street West and Lower Hobson Street.

Feedback

From 4 September to 1 October 2017, we sought feedback on our proposed design for phase 3 of the Nelson Street Cycleway. Thanks to everyone who provided feedback.

We will consider all feedback and use it to help refine the cycle route design.

We will prepare and publish a report on the feedback received and any changes made to the proposal following the feedback period. If you have provided your contact details when you gave us feedback, we will notify you when the report is available.


For more information on this project

Contact Auckland Transport