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Wheels roll for Onehunga bike hub2 min read

May 11, 2023 2 min

Wheels roll for Onehunga bike hub2 min read

Reading Time: 2 minutes
Ben Mansfield, Auckland Transport, at proposed bike hub site.

The Onehunga Train Station will soon welcome another kind of transport entirely, as the future home for a community bike hub.

The bike hub, pending resource consent, will sit at the Onehunga Mall entrance to the train station, where two shipping containers will be placed. One container will be a storage space and one will open out bi-fold doors to become the heart of the bike hub. This will offer bike maintenance services, education around bike maintenance so people can take those skills home, and a space to hold pop-up events and engage with the community. The hubs will also accept and refurbish donated bikes, diverting them from landfill and providing them to the community at low or no cost. It will be run by the EcoMatters Environment Trust, which operates four other hubs in Auckland.

Auckland Transport’s project manager for bike hubs, Ben Mansfield, says the main idea for a bike hub is getting bikes back into the community, and “helping people to see bikes as a normal mode of getting around.”

“We also know that bikes provide local economic benefits. We saw this on K Road when we put cycleways in and retail spending jumped. There are also the environmental benefits with reduced emissions and the bike hub will provide a sense of community, and a safe space for cyclists to come together.”

The location was chosen for several reasons, including being on the train line, allowing people to transport a broken bike to the hub. It’s also a high profile location from which to engage the community; within walking and cycling distance for many people in the area; there is cycling infrastructure in place, or being added or improved, such as the Hendry Ave cycle safety improvements; and support from the community and elected members.

The hub will be open between 16-20 hours a week, including the weekend, with a paid staff member always on site, supported by a network of volunteers.

“As well as great community exposure, co-location with public transport encourages alternative commuter options to ‘park and ride’. Anything that can dissuade driving to the train or bus station and promote greener options like ‘ride and ride’ is a good thing,” says Alex Young, from Bike Onehunga.

“The benefits of cycling are well known – it’s cheaper than driving, it reduces traffic – those that need to drive can do so more easily, and streets are safer for kids. It reduces road wear and maintenance costs, there are no parking hassles, it’s better for the planet, and better for your fitness and health. Having a local bike hub is another spoke in the wheel promoting that message to those yet to discover it, and importantly, provides great support for those in the community who already know it but are unsure how to get started with cycling.”