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Feedback sought on inner city cycle route and free parking

Feedback sought on inner city cycle route and shorter free parking

Rotorua residents are being asked for their views on two proposals aimed at improving vehicle and cycle traffic flows in the inner city. The surveys support the council and community’s Rotorua 2030 vision and Inner City Revitalisation Strategy.

The first issue is a review of the current two-hour free parking regime that has been trialled in the inner city since before Christmas. While Rotorua District Council’s free parking initiative has been well received by shoppers, some retailers are suggesting that traffic movement would be further improved if the free parking period was reduced.

Inner City Focus Group member and local retailer Ron Finn says a shorter period of free parking, before cars are required to move on, may result in better turnover of parking spaces and more bays being freed up for customers.

“We’re keen to see if shoppers and other regular visitors to the central city agree, and if that proves to be the case we’ll be recommending to the council they look at reducing the free parking time currently on offer. I’d personally like to see the free parking time reduced to 60 minutes on Tutanekai Street and 90 minutes on side streets. However nothing’s finalised yet as we’re interested in hearing what others think.”

In assessing the optimum free parking period for the inner city area the council will also take into account data on parking space occupancy levels from sensor units installed in parking spaces, such as vehicle turnover rates and average lengths of stay. The average stay in the P120 free parking area currently sits at approximately 43 minutes.

The second proposal that public views are being sought on is an initiative of Rotorua Cycle Action, a group of keen local cyclists wanting to make cycling a more accepted form of transport around Rotorua. The group’s initial focus has been on safe cycling routes to schools, and links to the central city.

Rotorua Cycle Action is now working in partnership with Rotorua District Council on a proposal to create a designated cycle route through the inner city.

Group coordinator Harm Zuidmeer said there were now cycling trails entering the city “from all angles” but facilities within the city itself were lacking.

“We want to link these cycleways, to provide a safe cycling route through the inner city and to help make it a place that people want to visit and spend time in.

“Our view is that all forms of transport can share space in the inner city and co-exist together on an equal footing - whether pedestrians, cyclists or motorists. It certainly works well in many towns and cities around the world. So we’re very keen to see if other Rotorua people also think this is a good idea,” he said.

To give the Inner City Focus Group, Rotorua Cycle Action and Rotorua District Council feedback on the two inner city proposals visit the council website rdc.govt.nz and click the ‘Inner City Surveys’ box on the home page. The two surveys will run online until the end of September.

[ENDS]

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