Cycleways and walkways
Council provides footpaths and cycleways to allow people to enjoy our natural environment and provide areas for exercise to improve wellbeing and overall quality of life. Council works to ensure footpaths and cycleways are safe to use and that their form and function are appropriate for their use.
With a variety of scenic rides that suit a range of skill levels, there is something for everyone; including seaside, native bush, country road tracks and mountain tracks.
Kaikōura Cycling Club: An incorporated club formed 2011 by a group of like-minded volunteers to promote cycling and improving cycling facilities in the Kaikōura district. Their vision is to develop a world class cycle and walking trail network that encompasses the ocean and the mountains of Kaikōura.
Coastal Sports: A local sports goods supplier. They provide bike hire, bike workshops and information on some of Kaikōuras trails.
Projects, Plans and Strategies
Council is supporting the Marlborough Kaikōura Trail Trust with its work developing the Picton to Kaikōura Coastal Pacific Trail.
At approximately 200km, the cycle trail will connect the communities of Picton, Blenheim, Seddon, Ward, Kēkerengū, Clarence and Kaikōura. 30km of the trail falls within the area of SH1 covered by the NZTA and KiwiRail works to improve safety and resilience of the road and rail corridor.
The trail will be built over a number of years, with sections completed and opened as funding and construction challenges allow.
In recent years, a number of our cycleways and walkways have had little council funded maintenance. To improve the safety, amenity and general condition of our cycleways and walkways council intends to spend $175,000 on our existing cycleways and walkways between 2018 and 2021.
Council is also working with central government to identify where additional funding may be found. If funding allows, over the next three years Council plans to conduct feasibility studies into a track from Mangamaunu to West End and a track from West End to Point Kean.
In 2009, council developed a Walking and Cycling strategy with the vision of “Kaikōura – a walking and cycling paradise, from the mountains to the sea. Kaikōura – he hikoi me eke pahikara pararaihi, ki uta ki tai.”
It listed three main objectives:
- Objective 1: Encourage and support people in Kaikōura to choose walking and cycling for active, healthy lifestyles and an improved environment.
- Objective 2: Develop a safe, accessible, sustainable and integrated network for walking and cycling.
- Objective 3: Ensure that all relevant strategies, policies, plans and practices for Kaikōura include and support walking and cycling.
Since 2009, Council has worked with groups such as the Lions and the Kaikōura cycling club to improve a number of projects including the boadwalks to the seal colony and whaeway station, extending the limestone tracks and funding a track behind the supermarket and rail crossing.
In April 2009, the Government allocated $50 million to the National Cycleway Fund to implement cycle trails throughout New Zealand, forming the New Zealand Cycle Trail. $30 million of co-funding was also committed from regional stakeholders.
The primary objectives of the New Zealand Cycle Trail are:
- to create jobs through the design, construction and maintenance of the cycle network
- to create a high-quality tourism asset which will enhance New Zealand’s competitiveness as a tourism destination and provide on-going employment and economic development opportunities for regional economies
- to maximise the range of complementary benefits that the cycle network provides to a wide range of New Zealanders. This includes events, recreational, health and other benefits.
In 2015 around 1.3 million people used the Great Rides of Nga Haerenga, the New Zealand Cycle Trail, generating an estimated $37.4 million for local communities.
The majority of the users were domestic visitors, with international visitors estimated at 13.5 per cent (114,351). Evaluation further showed that the cycle trails helped revitalise small communities including historic hubs, increased and expanded the number of local businesses, and created jobs close to the locality of the trails.
The estimated overall economic and social benefits for one year were valued at $49.4 million while the estimated total cost was $13.9 million.
In 2016 the government announced an additional $25 million over four years was announced for the next phase of the New Zealand Cycle Trail – enhancement and extension – to ensure that it continues to offer a world-class visitor experience.
Highlights of this ministry of Transport study include:
- Over one-third of New Zealanders own a bike (1.25 million people), 750,000 of whom ride at least once a month.
- Over 10 percent of cyclists use their bike every day (approximately 140,000 people) and about 38,000 (or 2.5 percent of commuters) ride to work
- Cycle tourists are also good for the local economy. Research in Victoria found that backpacker tourists (of which cycle tourists are a subset) spend less per day than the average overseas tourist, but stay longer and tend to spend about double the average per capita
- Due to their pace of travel and length of stay, bicycle tourists in the South Island spend considerable amounts of time and money in regional areas.
- Regional cycling events, such as the Lake Taupo cycle challenge, have a positive impact on local economies
- Infrastructure created for the events will also benefit local recreational and commuter cyclists.