Cycling Numbers Up Again


The amount of cyclists overall around Auckland in the latest annual monitoring survey showed a 3% rise but there were some more spectacular figures for individual areas.

So many cyclists seem to be on the roads these mornings.

The SH16 cycleway in Kingsland, which opened in April last year, is proving to be the massive success cycling advocates knew it would be. It has seen a rise of 19% in numbers in a year.

The Kingsland cycleway – the missing 1.24k stretch of cycleway alongside the Northwestern motorway- pieces together the mainly off-road 12km route between central and west Auckland.

Still awaited is a suitable route through Upper Queen Street, the Central Motorway Junction and along Grafton Gully to the Auckland University of Technology and Auckland University.

Kingsland Cycleway keeps you safe from the busy SH16

The Cycle Monitoring Programme, now in its fifth year, is a one day snapshot of cycling in the region taken in the second week of March each year. The sites were monitored at peak times from 6.30 am to 9 am and then again from 4 pm to 7 pm.
Here are the key stats:

  • More than 13,400 cyclist movements/trips were recorded at 82 sites across the region.
  • Tamaki Drive site has the highest count in Auckland. Cyclist movements increased by 19% to 1,059 from last year.
  • Cycling in and around the Auckland CBD increased by approximately 10%
  • There has been an increase of 30%  in the five years of monitoring (since 2007), an impressive increase of 7% per annum
  • Last June’s survey showed a huge 27% leap in numbers in the previous 12 months
  • 91% wore helmets
  • The monitoring programme also counted the numbers of school children riding to school.  Belmont Intermediate School had the highest numbers cycling to school, 165 out of a school roll of 547 or 30 per cent.  The school recently won a national cycling award for its contribution encouraging cycling.
  • 2% of school children aged 10 years and above cycle to school

Earlier this year the Manukau Harbour cycleway network, a joint project between Auckland Transport and NZTA opened, with cycling facilities connecting Onehunga to Mangere.

Auckland Transport Community Transport Manager Matthew Rednall says cycling is healthy, economical, good for the environment and a key contributing element in a liveable city.

It is but when cycling myself, i still have anxious moments dealing with cars and buses.  I have always loved the apt description Barbara Cuthbert from Cycle Action used during an old Auckland City Ccouncil debate about Dominion Rd bus lanes - cyclists are vulnerable in bus lanes because they are “like a mouse travelling with an elephant.”




  1. Max says:

    Thanks for the quick post - you are ahead of Cycle Action Auckland posting it on our own website (

    Overall, the numbers are not staggering, and since it’s a snapshot, there’s some statistical variance - but it’s rewarding to see that where work was done (such as on Kingsland, or on Tamaki Drive), cyclists do grow stongly in numbers.

    “It is but when cycling myself, i still have anxious moments dealing with cars and buses.”

    Totally understandable. That is why we think the best way forward is to build more cycleways, and physically protected cycle lanes. One can talk a lot about how cycling is safe, but until we take the stress out of it with better facilities, people won’t feel safe.

  2. AKT says:

    @Max Agreed but the anti cycling behaviour of some in vehicles will never change.

  3. Max says:

    I do think it will, Jon. As you get closer to 5% cyclists on the road, it’s a well-researched fact that crashes drop rapidly, and I think that is to a large degree due to better behaviour of motorists.

    There’s an interesting post on the “Cycling in Auckland” - CIA - blog that discusses this safety in numbers aspect with quite interesting graphs.

    Yes, there will always be the odd moron, by that can happen anywhere, including in the car, on the train etc… - the CURRENT attutudes won’t keep us from creating a cycle friendly Auckland any more than past attitudes have kept public transport from flourishing again.

  4. Matt L says:

    It is very rare these days not to see someone using the cycleway along SH16 when driving along there, about the only time you don’t is late at night.

  5. DanC says:

    Cycle lane beside the Eastern rail line please!

  6. Max says:


    Being investigated - and would link up to some parts that already exist, like the shared path boardwalk between Orakei Peninsula and Meadowbank, and later maybe all the way to Glen Innes and Panmure to link into the proposed AMETI cycleways.

    The main thing standing in the way there is lack of co-funding at a national level - if we had more than 0.7% of the WHOLE budget for walking AND cycling, this would soon be a goer.

  7. Sam F says:

    Yup, you’ll find me headed along that cycleway pretty much every working day of the year. Just got panniers so I expect I’ll be rolling further and longer around Auckland.

    It’s a very, very encouraging sign that cyclist numbers seem to have held up through winter too. At this rate come summer the Kingsland “cycle superhighway” might end up looking almost as lively as its bigger, smoggier neighbour.

  8. KarlHansen says:

    @Sam F - I cycled along today, and the one thing really missing from the Kingsland section is some mature plants. Those noise walls are not the ugliest ones around, but what wouldn’t some trees do for that stretch… the section along the golf course is so much prettier. Ah well, time will help that one.


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