Every cloud has a silver lining?
Maybe. The thing is, most NZ cities already have cycling infrastructure which is superior to ours, even in small cities of 50k people. Every arterial in Christchurch is a single lane each way with a massively wide bike lane and a 'full lane' take-off space at every set of lights (similar to the Rundle/Pulteney intersection).
I was going to take some photos last week to post to this forum but I was kinda busy holidaying...
Christchurch might be a bit more bike friendly than Adelaide but there's much room for improvement.
Alasdair, I met a NZ cycling planner at the Velo conference held in Adelaide in 1999. Even then they were ahead of Australia on cycling infrastructure.
I should probably also mention that all NZ city arterial roads are 50 km/h (and 30km/h in built-up, CBD-like areas).
This week I told a politician that I would like residential roads to have 30 km/h speed limit and 50 km/h for urban arterial roads. Nice to know an example in nearby NZ. Alasdair, can you provide more info on this?
It's hard to without photos. It's just the way it is in NZ. *ALL* urban arterials are 50km/h with the exception of the larger ones - in Christchurch Deans Ave/Harper Ave is 60km/h but it's three lanes each way - like West Tce in scale.
Now, residential roads are also 50km/h by default but you'll see 30km/h signs in places where there's significant pedestrian traffic or multiple crossings (examples in Adelaide would be the 'Foodland' part of Prospect Rd, the busiest part of King William Rd opposite Opey Ave, The Parade between Edward & George St, O'Connell St between Ward St & Tynte St, all of Hindley St).
I noticed that most residents seemed to be ignoring the 50 km/h limit somewhat so it's either new or insufficiently enforced or both.
I think you'll find a majority of the 30km/hr speed zones in Christchurch are in areas where there is earthquake related road damage....eg. where they've stacked containers along base of cliffs on road out to Sumner.
The 50km/hr urban limit isn't new...it's been around since I first started driving around Christchurch (late 70's).....
Re residents ignoring the speed limit...it's no worse than it is here in Adelaide.
With regards to the 30km/h zones I wasn't referring to Christchurch in particular - you'll find these zones all over NZ. You'll see them in touristy places like Queenstown but also in places no tourist ever goes to like Timaru or New Plymouth. It's noticeable because we just don't do it here (the Prospect Rd 40km/h zone is the closest I've seen).
There are indeed a crapload of temporary 30km/h zones all over the city due to pipe works etc but I wasn't really referring to those. They're just the equivalent of our 25 km/h road work limits.
I wasn't aware that the 50km/h urban limit was old hat. I lived in NZ in the early 90s but I wasn't of driving age at the time and didn't pay much attention to the speed limits.
Roger on the 30km/hr zones.
Prior to the change from imperial to metric in the mid 60's the urban speed limit was 30mph. With the switch to metric the limits remained the same....50km/hr.
Having driven in both Adelaide and Christchurch I find driving around Christchurch alot less stressful than in Adelaide. Maybe its because of the earthquakes but in Christchurch other drivers seem more willing to let you into a lane and at a number of intersections (eg Ferry Road Bridge) there seems to be an unwritten rule that even if you have the right of way if there's a line of cars waiting to turn across your path you stop and wave a few of them through.
Im glad to see youre ignoring the current Australian govt travel advisory on Christchurch and travelling to the battered garden city........much appreciated.
Oops, I wasn't even aware there WAS an advisory!
Martin, realise you are referring to NZ.
30mph = 48km/h. 35mph = 56km/h.
When Australia went metric, some speed limits increased slightly.