Aucklanders get on their bikes

KELSEY FLETCHER
Last updated 05:00 26/06/2012

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Aucklanders are getting on their bikes in record numbers.

According to a recent public transport and cycle monitoring report 65,000 people used the two-wheel mode of transport in May compared to 61,000 the same time last year.

The numbers have also grown 16.5 per cent, to 10,856, in the morning peak.

Cycle Action spokesperson Barbara Cuthbert said the figures prove Aucklanders are starting to leave their cars at home.

"It's extremely exciting for the city because it means more people are choosing to travel the roads - that's less congestion, better air quality and the impact the Mayor talks about," she said.

The monthly usage is similar to that of the Onehunga train line which opened in September 2010.

In the report the rail service was found to have carried around 63,500 passengers per month.

Cuthbert said the train line was a great investment but cycling was a better investment.

"It was a big cost to reopen the line and build the station," she said.

"You can lay a kilometre of cycleway for a fraction of rail and this report is telling us that more people are wanting to cycle. It's low cost for transport for the public purse and for the people who are cycling."

Auckland Transport has fast-tracked funding to create new walk and cycleways by bringing forward money available in the draft Regional Land Transport Programme's 10 year plan.

"In the next three years there is real money to make for better cycle infrastructure," Cuthbert said.

"And we know the more infrastructure there is, the more people start cycling."

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