Residents tell Wellington Council to put the brakes on cycleway

Wellington City councillors are at war over a controversial cycleway, with accusations of budget blowouts and safety concerns plaguing the project. 

Locals are now using the new cycleway in Island Bay after work began last year, the plan being to link Wellington's outer suburbs to the city centre.

Island Bay locals aren’t convinced about the unusual design, labelling it “an accident waiting to happen”. Source: 1 NEWS

The design is unusual as cyclists ride on the inside lane while cars park closer to the middle of the road.

"I don't really like the fact that the cars are parked part way out towards the road. There's not a lot of room for cars to go past," a cyclist told ONE News.

A pedestrian commented: "I just think it's an accident waiting to happen."

But cycling advocates say the design is safe.

"It's been proven all over the world. I think that change is hard. People will get used to it and I predict Island Bay people will be proud of their new cycleway," said Patrick Morgan of the Cycling Action Network.

If one dollar has been spent over that budget heads need to roll - Councillor Paul Eagle

Island Bay is one of five key cycling routes to be developed in the coming years. 

The council says it's making it easier and safer for cyclists to get around town, but some councillors claim the cycleway budget has blown out by $2 million.

"We need to urgently reassure ratepayers that the budget has been met. If one dollar has been spent over that budget heads need to roll," said councillor Paul Eagle.

Wellington's pro-cycleway mayor, Celia Wade-Brown, says officials assure her the budget is not overspent.

But the Island Bay Residents' Association today delivered leaflets to residents, calling on the council to put the brakes on the cycleway and declaring "the fight is not over".   

Residents meet with council tomorrow to address their concerns.