TODAY |

Cycling opponents plan to block Auckland cycle route in bridge counter-protest

People are aiming to take over Auckland's popular cycle route along Tamaki Drive on Sunday in protest against hundreds of cyclists crossing the Harbour Bridge last month.

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Beinn Chapple-Law has planned a protest that involves blocking cycle lanes, but initially his intentions were interpreted as more sinister. Source: 1 NEWS

Two northbound lanes of the bridge were forced to close on May 30 as cyclists crossed it as a form of protest. 

Days later, the Government announced a $785 million cycling and walking bridge would be built. 

It's been met by opposition from the Taxpayers' Union and National — as well as photographer Beinn Chapple-Law, who has organised Sunday's protest, dubbed Liberate the Lane - Cycle Lane Special

"If we saw that in South Auckland — and these weren't privileged, white males and females that were from Ponsonby, Herne Bay area attacking police — there would be people arrested, maybe even tased," he told 1 NEWS.

Inspector John Thornley of Waitematā Police said arresting people is their last resort.

"We take into account a range of factors when deciding what enforcement action to take."

If Chapple-Law's name sounds familiar, it is because he made headlines in 2019 after he was snapped hanging out of a car boot on the Harbour Bridge.

He was photographing an Audi R8 sports car, telling Stuff at the time there was "zero chance" of him falling out the vehicle he was in because he had a harness.

Police described the incident as "extremely dangerous" at the time, while Waka Kotahi NZ Transport Agency described his behaviour as "reckless and dangerous". 

When Chapple-Law first created the event page on May 31 for Sunday's protest, some people were worried it was about maiming cyclists.

But the event's description now points out people will be "walking, not driving". 

"I think it would be really concerning if there was any violence or aggression," Green Party MP Julie Anne Genter told 1 NEWS.

"Obviously they have a right to protest, but again, kind of funny that they'd be protesting something that means there'll be fewer cars on the road."

Chapple-Law has also started a petition stating cyclists should require a registration to be on the road.