Lake Rd Nightmare – Your Comments

Posted by on Jan 28, 2011 | 16 Comments

Only the cyclists got to work on time.

Only the cyclists got to work on time.

The Speculator suggests commuting down Lake Rd has got a whole lot worse; we include the text from an email below received from a nonplussed reader and Devonport commuter;

“Last night I left work at 7.40pm and got home at 9.10pm from Newton. It normally takes twenty minutes at that time of the evening. I was sitting on Esmonde Road for about an hour and a quarter. Lord knows what it was like at 6 pm when they say on the signs to expect delays from?  Why would they close the lanes while the rush hours are still on?  I’d have thought that if they kept at least two lanes going into Devo open until 8pm then traffic would keep moving OK with a reduction to one lane afterwards.”

Send us your thoughts and experiences and we’ll run a mini-blog of what’s going on. If we get enough feedback, we’ll submit it to the Devonport-Takapuna Board.


  1. rackjabbit says:

    I don’t understand why there are no decent parking charges at the ferry building, especially for commuters who work in the city and live on the shore. In my opinion, if we charged $20 per day for all day parking we could supplement Devonport’s income AND reduce some of the congestion in the morning and evenings on Lake road. C’mon folks, this is an easy solution!!

  2. robert says:

    This morning I left stanley point right down the end at 8.45 am and arrived at northcroft street at 9 am …wow 15 minutes.See what a bit of pressure does to sort out the issues.A pity felicity and martin didnt join the protestors trying to save the st heliers art deco houses.Imagine if 20,000 people turned up and sat down on site.Power to the people.

  3. Nikki09 says:

    Yes, it has been a disaster with regards to the planning and timing. One wednesday evening it I left Barrys Point Road at 9.10pm and arrived home in Devonport at 10pm. On the friday I left Devonport at 3.30pm and got to Barrys Point Road at 5.40pm. Supposedly the roadworks (and delays) were not meant to start until 6pm.
    Yes, it would be wonderful if everyone could use other methods of transport but as I was going diving and had a large gear bag and two cylinders full of pressurised air I left the bike at home.
    I did notice today that the signs on Esmonde Road say to expect delays from 7pm tonight so maybe someone is taking notice and they are now starting later.

  4. JL says:

    Oh, I just knew there’d be a cyclist who tried to make the rest of us feel less than virtuous because we don’t share their mode of transport…..Look, please realise there are people (sometimes elderly or physically disabled) who can’t use a bike, and for whom a car is a lifeline. Also, please don’t let a serious discussion about the debacle that is Lake Rd get sidetracked into this issue…It’s too important!.

  5. Uncle says:

    I accept that Lake Road is crowded at certain times. If I need to go to the city I use the bicycle, the ferry and then public transport or an old motorbike. When I started work in the early 1970’s most of the young that I worked with used small bikes, up to 125cc.It was the same for those at ATI and the Uni. There was the Devonport and Stanley Point ferry and buses.
    If your life is ruled by the car, accept its limitations.

  6. Felicity says:

    Good on you, Martin.

  7. Philip says:

    Fulton Hogan must have the most profit written contract available with Lake Rd.

    Moving on —

    1. Lake Rd should be 4 lanes to Belmont shops. As motorists we can creater this ad hoc. Create the 3 & 4 th lanes in peak traffic when the speed is low. It is already done going north to the Hauraki Rd lights from the BP station.

    2. Forget the cycle lane on the road. Used the footpath as sane cyclist have alwas used.

    3. For the future — who els has noticed the new pedestrian crossing that will be completed midway between Hauraki cnr and Esmonde Rd. How long will they allow random pedestrians to cross 5 lames of traffic. A minumum of 2 minutes. Think of the effect on rush hour traffic. Another stupid idea by theoretical idiots.

    Write, phone your council to get this removed.

    Speculator — please follow up.

  8. John says:

    Martin’s comments, in essence, mean that we should put up and shut up. If we don’t like a situation, let’s do nothing. On a global level that attitude would have meant that democracies would never have been created. On a local level it means that we should sit meekly in the traffic queues and not offer any constructive comments and criticism that could improve the situation. In other words, leave it to our local politicians – they know what they’re doing. Yea, right! Martin may be cowed into submission but hopefully there still remains a few of us who believe that the voice of the individual citizen should be heard.

  9. Martin says:

    Auckland is 4th in the top 5 cites in the world to live in.

    But, compared to the 3 cities ahead of it, it has low population density, a low tax base and, in the past, car-centric transport policies.

    These policies seemed cheap at the time but proved expensive and inefficient in the long term.

    I think it is poor taste to blame others if one is part of the problem.

    Let’s not equate that with living under some of the most repressive totalitarian regimes in the world.

  10. Robert says:

    Hey Martin do I have a choice about suffering from the results of sloppy incompetence or do I put my voice along with all the other silent sufferers to bring about change.Think for a moment about the people revolution happening in northern africa.This would not happen with the view you epouse .They would not complain and accept the choice they made.
    It is possible and desirable to have public transport that works up lake road but I never see a bus in all the queues of traffic so wheres the choice.Martin join the demand for change ;raise expectations and see the results happen.Choose action instead of fatalism.

  11. Martin says:

    99.9% of us have a choice whether to drive our cars down Lake Rd.

    We have a choice about where to live, where to work, how much time/money to spend on our commute etc etc.

    You may not like your options, but they are yours to choose.

    If you don’t like the choice you have made, don’t grizzle about it, change it!

    One of the things I learnt about being an adult is that every time you make a choice, you also make compromises.

    So next time you’re sitting fuming in your car, repeat after me: “I am here because I have chosen to be here. I will stop complaining to others about choices I have made. I am an adult.”

  12. JL says:

    Yes, Lake Rd is a nightmare! Generally, we’ve been sadly let down by atrocious, ad-hoc design. And the current roadworks, plus the effect of the cycle lane are the icing on the cake as far as hold-ups are concerned….(Nothing against cyclists, but there just HAD to be a better way!)
    The police seem to think Lake Rd’s an ok spot though, because their three-night-a week-vigil must return plenty of revenue from those poor s…s who ease up on the pedal on the last hill before home.

  13. robert says:

    I have to say the lake road project is the worst managed project I have ever seen.I was very impressed with the newmarket viaduct project and the victoria road tunnel where traffic management was well planned and motorists tolerated the delays because they were managed.But lake road is appalling for its complete lack of understanding of traffic management.The engineer running this project should be immediately sacked and replaced with someone who knows how to run a difficult project.
    Sure there are constraints but these can be managed .Why isnt there more effort to open up more lanes in the peak times in the main direction of travel.For instance when the navy goes home shift the bloody cones from 4pm so that they get more lanes north and clear before the city dwellers come home from about 5pm and shift the cones so they have 2 lanes.Why not change the light phases at these heavy traffic times to clear the main road faster at peak times.Why can they not divert some traffic through some back streets when they really have to close down to 2 lanes.Finally why for Gods sake did they not finish one side properly so we can use it full time before they started on the other side.

  14. Hamish says:

    Speculator’s Lake Rd webcam, and the government’s motorway cameras are invaluable when planning a trip to/from the peninsula. We need a webcam at the Esmonde end of Lake Road so we can see if there’s any madness going on around that crucial area too.

    Like your thinking young man. However, as we discovered with the Lake Rd webcam, it is not the easiest or cheapest of exercises. Are there any local businesses / commuters out there who would like to sponsor a webcam located as suggested above? – Ed

  15. Leone says:

    Maybe if they close the lanes at 7pm and not open til 7am then that would give the workers 12hours solid work if they can rotate to have their breaks etc. But they really cannot be blamed for the weather and I think that is why they have to do a certain amount during the daytime – I only hope that it is all going to be concreted and not tarsealed over with the utilities underground in the footpath that way the roads will never again have to be dug up.
    Another thing that frustrates me is why do all the houses have to have so much grass area in front – that is at least one lane??

  16. John says:

    Unfortunately the current Lake Road traffic debacle is a continuation of the sorry history of road mismanagement. The culmination was the poll taken a year ago in which Lake Road was voted the worst road in Auckland. The traffic has grown steadily worse yet for decades nothing has been done. Oh, I almost forgot, yes, it was decided to paint cycle lanes on the road thereby narrowing it and causing more traffic woes. (As hard-pressed motorists have noted, the lanes remain virtually empty.) Maybe one day it will occur to those who are paid from the public purse that all actions on Lake Road must give top priority to the vehicle user. But let’s not hold our breath – we’d run the danger of asphyxiation from the traffic jams. And finally, why wasn’t the work carried out immediately after Xmas? But then, that would of course, have been the sensible thing do do.

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