Move the bike cage - updated 7 April 2014 & 25 July 2016

  • As at 22 July 2016, the Birkenhead Wharf Bike Park has been dismantled at AT's expense.  We hope that it will find a good re-use in a suitable location.  Hopefully AT will erect some bike racks and identify a scooter park ASAP.

  • From May 2014, this site will no longer be active. However a group is continuing to lobby the Kaipatiki Local Board to move bike parking to another area on the wharf so that the cage does not disrupt local activities any longer. 

  •  7 April 2014 - AT has reported back to the Kaipatiki Local Board recommending no change to the bike cage. In a long report, they have not taken any effort to consult with the stakeholders.  They do not consider the actual proposal made to the Local Board, that simple, low cost bike parking be installed by the Coke machine.  The claim that any attempt to move the bike cage would cost even more than the present bike cage.  It is a very sad indictment on the management of Auckland Transport that they see no need to consult with the community - both when they pushed the construction of the bike cage and when they responded to the Kaipatiki Local Board's request to review it. They revert to that sad phrase from the RMA  - that the effects are deemed to "be less than minor".  

  • 31 March 2014
    • Auckland Transport has still not provided any response about the Birkenhead Wharf Bike Cage - in particular about the costs of relocating bike parking to the area by the soft drink vending machine. 
    • A maximum of two bikes are using the bike cage while every peak hour ferry trip has many more bikes than this.

  • 6 Dec 2013
    • The NSTA reports that "Vocal opponents of a controversial bike shed on Birkenhead Wharf now want a storage cage on the wharf for their exclusive use."  
      (see 
      http://www.stuff.co.nz/auckland/local-news/north-shore-times/9479646/Bike-shed-opponents-ask-for-cage)
    • The article does not, in our opinion, fairly and accurately reflect the views of the various groups who have asked for the bike cage to be moved, Nor does it differentiate the different locations of the bike "cage" and the proposed boat storage.
    • The NSTA is only partially reporting what the NBYC presented to the Kaipatiki Board at a recent meeting.  It has to our knowledge made no effort to confer with groups who did not attend the KLB meeting because they are waiting on the Auckland Transport report.
    • Nor does it refer to the fact that Auckland Transport and the environmental review authors Tonkin Taylor completely failed to confer with local stakeholders before recommending to the KLB that they should waste $66k on a bike cage in an inappropriate location.
    • Our preference is still for cycle parking to be located by the coke machine on the wharf - where the cost would have been a fraction of $66k.
  • 27 November 2013
    • At the Kaipatiki Local Board meeting, the bike cage came up on the agenda - but Auckland Transport has not replied to the board yet.
      Apparently the people at AT are reviewing all Bike Facilities and so the board may not get a response from AT until that work is completed. 

    • Some people who objected to the bike cage received a letter from Auckland Transport during November.  Essentially this letter is reiterating their position that AT made the best decision possible.  It is worrying that AT seems incapable of acknowledging their mistake and that the location by the coke machine would have been simple, low cost and appropriate.  Instead they have wasted a considerable sum of ratepayers money and by their lack of a considered response continue to undermine their credibility with elected representatives, ratepayers and residents. 

    • During November, between 3 and 5 motor scooters have been parking regularly at the wharf.  One bike (always the same) has been parked i the bike cage a few times a week.  There is a report of another bike being there once.

    • AT is developing a reputation, whether deserved or not, for not consulting with its stakeholders or the Council.  Hopefully the review of CCO's next year will see some improvements in the responsiveness of senior management at AT. 

  • 16 October 2013
    • The elections saw a number of local board candidates elected who are opposed to the bike cage remaining in its current location. 
    • We have asked to speak at the first KLB meeting in November.  Hopefully by then they should have the relocation costings.
    • This week so far there have been no bikes parked in the cage;  two scooters have been parked outside.
  • 11 Oct 2013:
  • 3 Oct 2013:
    • Commuters tell us that AT staff have been at Birkenhead Wharf trying to get people to sign up to use the bike cage.  
      Have they not been told about the request to move the cage?   Our group has still not had a single communication from Auckland Transport - they appear to place the responsibility with the Kaipatiki Local Board.   However a number of KLB members are deeply disappointed with the way that AT has handled the whole project.
    • Candidates for the Kaipatiki Local Board at a meeting at St Andrews Church were asked to answer a question: would you move the bike cage?  Only one candidate seemed to support keeping it where it is.  Most favoured moving it and some sitting KLB members wanted to wait and see what the costs of moving it would be.
    • We would be interested to hear whether a judicial review of the planning decision could be undertaken. A lawyer who is not a specialist in this area thinks it might be possible. Does anyone know a lawyer with expertise in this area.
    • Another angle might be to ask Tonkin Taylor and the Commissioner who approved the application to refund their fees to supplement the money the KLB has set aside for correcting the mistake. 
    • See the video at http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=LN2vOarynZQ to see what visibility is like in good weather. In bad weather or adverse light conditions, safety is reduced.
  • Auckland Transport has added opaque signage to the south-east end of the bike cage as shown in this photo.  One might have thought that a small sign would have been sufficient given boating group concerns about visibility and safety?  
Does Auckland Transport have anyone who is prepared to talk to local people?  They say it is a Local Board responsibility but one only needs to talk to local board members and candidates to realise that AT has not done its homework.  Surely after the board voted to investigate moving the cage to a more appropriate location, AT might have deferred applying these signs to the structure.
The sign advertises a web page to register for 24 hour bike parking which is not yet active: http://aucklandtransport.govt.nz/bikeparking
Prospective users can register for a personalised access card by filling out an application form.  If ther application form is approved, they will be sent an access card which can be used to gain access to the bike park by swiping the card.  Access is on a first in, first served basis.  Users are warned  to local all personal belongings securely and to respect the facility and other patron's equipment. Bike repair standards are provided for added convenience to make any minor bike repairs as needed. There will be information on the repair stand for instructions on how to make the repairs.  There is nothing to indicate whether the interior of the cage is intended for use by motor scooters or not. 
  • Would you like to join the committee to help get the bike parking moved to a location on the wharf that doesn't impede other community activities?   Please email us at:  movethecage@gmail.com

  • A number of people have received an anonymous letter from a cycle activist who is under the impression we want to move the bike cage completely from Birkenhead Wharf.  This has never been our intention.  We all support the provision of cycle parking at Birkenhead Wharf - but believe that consultation should have taken place to ensure that other wharf users were not adversely affected.  Our intention is ONLY to move cycle parking to another location on the wharf.   We invite the anonymous letter writer to email us at movethecage@gmail.com - we would be happy to meet with you on site and discuss the issues in a constructive way.  (We regret any upset caused by the anonymous letter writer to the business owners he/she targetted - we know that local Birkenhead people all support you warmly).  
  • The Kaipatiki Local Board voted on 11 September by 5 votes to 3 not to respond to the petition before the elections as the previous meeting seemed to indicate they would. They voted (5 to 3): to ask Auckland Transport to cost the options 4, Aa and Bb on the tabled presentation, or any combination thereof, and reported to the incoming board.  The Move the Bike Cage core committee met this week and decided to ask the Board and Auckland Transport to keep us fully informed at each step and to ensure that the safety of wharf users (fishing and boating people) is not deferred or compromised.
    We hope that if the costing of either option exceeds the money that the KLB has put aside that Auckland Transport will proactively find the difference. After all the KLB and local ratepayers should not have to pay for the shortcomings in the design and planning approval stages by the architects, environmental consultants and the duty commissioner.  The committee will ask the Council and Auckland Transport to make all documents available under the official information act (LGOIMA).  
    • The options considered were those in a report from John Duthie on the alternatives to the current cycle cage location. The options are to move the bike cage to the parking spaces opposite the boat ramp, or, to sell the bike cage for use at another site and to (a) create cycle parking by the soft drinks machine on the wharf and (b) provide scooter parking at a more suitable location on the street.
John Duthie's 2-page report to KLB is in the agenda for next Wed, just released. It's on pages 54-56 of the agenda at
http://www.aucklandcouncil.govt.nz/EN/AboutCouncil/meetings_agendas/local_boards/Pages/kaipatikilocalboard.aspx
Or for the text of the report, click here: Report to KLB meeting 11 September 2013
  • On Tuesday 3 September 2013, representatives of various groups including cyclists and motor scooter users met with John Duthie who is preparing a report on what can be done to address the issues raised by the bike cage location.  Mr Duthie's report will be presented to the Local Board at its last meeting on 11 September.   Participants expressed gratitude at the opportunity to provide their input and the wish that consultation had taken place 6 moths ago.

  • On Wednesday 14 August 2013, the Kaipatiki Local Board received the petition of 628 signatures and heard presentations about the bike cage.
    The board voted to meet with representatives of the stakeholders and to receive a report with a view to moving the cycle parking facility.
  • The petition gathered by local residents received over 620 signatures - a very strong response.
     People have been very clear and strong in their condemnation of the location provided for the bike cage.
     People are supportive of the principle of cycle parking - but not the location selected.
  • As at 22 August, Kaipatiki Local Board staff are convening a meeting of interested parties.
  • There will be representatives of the Birkenhead Residents Association, the Northcote & Birkenhead Yacht Club, the fishing community, Cycle Action and hopefully motor scooter users.

  •  The petition was presented to the Kaipatiki Local Board on Wednesday 14 August 2013 at the Kaipatiki Local Board offices.
  •   Gillian Taylor, chair of the Birkenhead Residents Association spoke to the petition
  •   Graham Thow, commodore of the Northcote & Birkenhead Yacht Club let a slide show and video tell the water safety story
  •   Greg Hill, of Go-Fish, told how Birkenhead Wharf is the only good fishing spot from Devonport to Island Bay,
      how the cage prevents people casting their lines properly and how many fishermen rely on catching fish to feed their families.   
  • Nick Kearney spoke to his petition of 79 signature collected over a few days
  • The Kaipatiki Local Board voted to ask officers to report on a new location and appointed a sub-committee of 4 (Waugh, Gillon, McKay, Marshall) to meet with the petition organiser, the NBYC commodore and Cycle Action
  • The meeting was civilised and acknowledged both the good work that Auckland Transport has done at the wharf but also the lessons learnt from the trial.  Hopefully we can all move forward to find a solution that will meet an admirable objective without causing difficulties to other wharf users.

  • A big thank you to everyone who helped circulate the petition and to collect signatures.
  • Click here for more information about the petition.

 
 

For generations, people have valued Birkenhead Wharf for its panoramic view, its fishing and other harbour-related activities



 

Now this deeply-loved part of the heritage of Birkenhead has been compromised by a steel structure plonked in the middle of the view - without consultation with local people

The safety of children and people fishing has been compromised - and it could all have been done more cheaply and without the down-side

Sign the petition now!

The council's aim was to create safe cycle and motor scooter parking for ferry commuters. 
  • But at Devonport Wharf, the Council has created well over 50 cycle parking spaces without impacting on the views or the safety of other users

  • At Birkenhead Wharf, a similar low-key approach would have avoided compromising views and water safety - 
    and at a fraction of the cost.

The bike parking solution chosen for Birkenhead is the wrong design and in the wrong place. 
No consultation with affected parties was undertaken.
  • The planners claim the effects were seen to be "less than minor"
  • Birkenhead residents and visitors contest this assertion
  • The Devonport example shows how it could have been done

It's not too late - Sign the petition now - to save this beautiful view - keep this treasure for future generations
  • Keep the wharf safe for young children sailing or boating by the wharf
  • Make room for the many people who fish from the wharf
  • Make room for the public to watch sailing and canoe regattas
  • Make room for the elderly to sit in comfort and enjoy the panorama!
We have requested the Kaipatiki Local Board to receive the petition and two delegations on Wednesday 14 August at around 5.30pm