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Bikes in Schools Auckland celebrates 25th school at Ranui

Auckland Transport media release
24 July 2017

Bikes in Schools Auckland celebrates 25th school at Ranui today

Today Ranui School pupils hopped on the school’s 40 new bikes and took the maiden lap of the school’s brand new bike track.

Former Deputy Principal Del McFarlane-Scott, Auckland Transport’s Kathryn King and the oldest and youngest pupil at Ranui School cut the ribbon to open the 25th Auckland Bikes in Schools project.

The milestone is the culmination of five years of the project in Auckland, which is run by The Bike on NZ Charitable Trust. The Trust’s main objective is to enable as many New Zealand children as possible to ride a bike on a regular and basis within school, through its national ‘Bikes in Schools’ project.

The new Ranui School track provides a safe place for the kids to improve their cycling skills, get fit and have fun.

When the weather improves the school will finish off their mini BMX/pump track and bike skills obstacle course. The school also has a full storage facility which will soon be painted with a mural.

Mayor Phil Goff says, “Bikes in Schools is a wonderful project, not only for the kids who will now get to ride every day, but for our whole city. By making cycling safer and more accessible, we’re encouraging more people to get about on bikes rather than in cars. It has obvious health benefits and will overtime help decongest our roads and lower our carbon emissions.

“It takes an entire community to bring a Bikes and Schools facility to life. Congratulations to Ranui School on their fundraising efforts and the local community for supporting this great endeavour.”

The Bikes in Schools Auckland project kicked off in Auckland in 2012 at Nga Iwi School in Mangere and five years later continues to be a loved part of the community. Bikes in Schools Trustee Paul McArdle says that the project is going from strength to strength both nationally and in Auckland.

“What makes this project great is that any school can take part. We provide the framework and advice which gets them started, the school still needs to fundraise for their project but usually find that the community and many different funders get behind them, and the track and other facilities happen quicker than they thought possible. We are very grateful for the excellent support of Auckland Transport from the start in 2012 which has been a major factor to the success of the project in Auckland.”

Ranui School Principal Heather Rewiri says, “The school grounds are now a resource that benefits the whole community and most importantly our children’s health, wellbeing and learning. This project will ensure that every child will have the opportunity to learn how to ride a bike, then improve their riding techniques progressively. These new facilities were only made possible by the generous support of the many people and organisations who have worked with us including of course the Bike on NZ Charitable Trust.”

Auckland Transport Manager of Walking, Cycling and Road Safety Kathryn King says, “It’s delightful to see children getting so much enjoyment out of being on a bike. We invest in the Bikes in Schools project for the obvious outcomes like children getting day to day fun out of riding. But we also have a plan for transport choices for all Aucklanders and these projects mean every time someone uses the track they are gaining the skills they need to try biking to work or another place they might have taken the car or public transport.

“In 1970, 20% of intermediate school children in Auckland biked to school and that number has now dropped to only 3.9%. Supporting Bikes in Schools is one way we are trying to reverse that trend. This will also go a long way to reducing congestion which is evident with how traffic patterns are impacted during school holidays. Well done to Ranui School for bringing together the funding to create this great community asset.”

All the current Bikes in Schools projects can be seen on this map

Ranui School would like to thank the generous donors and supporters who have made their Bikes in Schools project possible:
• Auckland Transport
• Auckland Council Sport & Recreation department
• The Trusts Community Foundation
• Bike on NZ
• Ranui Baptist Church
• Harcourts Foundation
• Blue Sky Community Trust
• NZ Community Trust
• AMI
• Comprehensive Care (Waitemata PHO)


A video of Kathryn King speaking about the project can be found here:https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bBwDKpv0uPo

ENDS

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