A T2/Bus lane along Pakuranga Road as part of the AMETI Eastern Busway project might not be perfect but is "the best possible solution", cycling advocates say.
Bike East Auckland members have told Howick Local Board that a T2 lane during peak hours will improve traffic flow and encourage more people on to buses and out of cars.
A temporary westbound lane is expected to be in place between Highland Park and Ti Rakau Drive over the time building the project will take, but Pakuranga MP Simeon Brown, Howick Councillors Paul Young and Sharon Stewart, and Howick Local Board Chair David Collings have all expressed concerns that reducing lanes won’t solve congestion.
"The simple truth is that taking the car is quicker than taking public transport and the T2/Bus lane is crucial to changing that," Ben Fraser said.
"Shared lanes are quicker and that encourages people to use the bus or to car-pool, removing vehicles from the road. It might not be perfect, it might not be liked, but it is the best possible current solution."
Because cyclists can use the lanes, they improved safety where it was not possible to have dedicated cycleways, he said, and a recent Howick Youth Council survey indicated there was support for them - 70 per cent of respondents supporting them, including 56 per cent of drivers.
Mr Collings says board members are yet to be convinced a T2/Bus lane will work well on a road that carries 50,000 vehicles a day.
"We will keep talking with Auckland Transport and keep an open mind on the issue," he says.
AT has investigated various options and says its analysis shows a T2 lane will deliver better journey times through the construction zone.
Its traffic management options are designed to minimise the impact of construction by providing more choice, and they will be monitored throughout the work, with the appropriate changes made.
There is more on the project here.