The Delorean Bicycle – Hamilton City Council Celebrates 100 Years Of Back To The Past

The following article was published in the ‘Waikato Argus’, the forerunner to the Waikato Times, back in 1913.

Cycling Tracks 

Speaking at last nights meeting of the Hamilton borough council, the Mayor said he was almost ashamed of the number of people who were being prosecuted for riding bicycles on the footpath. He thought the time had come when they should lay down cycle tracks in Hamilton, and he would be glad if the works committee would report on the matter. He moved that they be instructed to do so. It seemed to him they might lay a track from Whitiora and over in Hamilton East, and along some of the other roads where there was a good deal of traffic. He was informed that in Ulster alone there were 150 bicycles.

Cr Tidd, in seconding, said he had brought the matter up a month ago.
Cr Speight was totally against the proposal. They needed footpaths in the outer districts, and these should be attended to first, unless they got a special rate from the cyclists.

Cr Tristram said his experience was that cyclists deserved no consideration whatsoever. No matter how good the roads were they would get on to the footpaths. If the roads were good enough for walking on they were good enough for cyclists. When he used to cycle they were not half as good.

The borough engineer said a cycle track six feet wide would cost from £5 to £6 per chain. Cr McKinnon said he was quite of Cr Tristram’s way of looking at it. If they formed cycle tracks, it would just be a favourite track for speed tests and that sort of thing, and they would have more trouble controlling the traffic than they do at present. He did not think they were called upon to spend any money in this way.

Both footpath and track would require to be kerbed. Cr Hayter said he would like to see cyclists getting a fair chance. They had none at present against vehicle drivers, who would not keep to their proper side.

The Mayor thought the cyclists were very ill-used. There were hundreds of them in Hamilton and nothing had been done for them during the last few years. Cycling was the poor mans method of getting around. Cr Tristram said there was no use remitting it to the works committee, as they had considered it and had no recommendation to make.

The Mayor altered his motion to appointing a special committee, consisting of himself and Crs Fow, Tidd and Hayter, with the engineer. Cr Howden seconded, and this was carried by five to three, Crs Tristram, McKinnon and Speight dissenting.

Cr Howden suggested that the committee should experiment with a track along Anglesea street to find out the cost, etc., and the Mayor said that could be considered.

I really wanted to make my next post about the Council denying oral submissions to the public and being the only council to do so, and since I’ve recieved a response to both my formal complaint and my OIA request surrounding the erosion of democracy in our ‘City of the Future’ I guarantee it will be. Stay tuned Tronites and other Kiwi’s interested in cycling, local democracy and the separated cycle path to a brighter future.

– Max Dillon Coyle

WaikatoArgus-page-001Cycling — Ohinemuri Gazette — 21 August 1901 — The Ohinemuri Gazette. AND UPPER THAMES WARDEN WEDNESDAY  AUGUST 21  1901. Local and General.Ohinemuri Gazette — 21 August 1901


Complaint to the Hamilton City Council on Banning Formal Oral Submissions #Ham10YP

Here is my email sent to the appropriate HCC addresses. I have also made an Official Information Act request for the feedback which supposedly led to this decision. Personally I doubt this feedback exists, except in some ephemeral anecdotal form in a certain Mayor’s head. Here’s this mornings complaint:

Good morning,

I am writing to make a formal complaint about the current Submission processes surrounding the 10 Year Plan and Hamilton City Councils ongoing submissions procedures.
Hamilton City Council must offer the option to submitters of presenting an oral submission to full council within the council chambers as it has always done.

The only chance for oral presentations during the submission period for the Hamilton 10 Year Plan has been through ‘Community Engagement Meetings’, a very informal space where public talk over you and you talk to a few councillors and a few staff. This is unacceptable. It is not an appropriate forum to give a full submission to reach all councillors, appropriate staff whilst being heard by the public gallery and any attendant press.

Council has stated that due to changes in local government legislation, the Council is able to use different ways to hear people’s views on proposals. You’ve stated you are able, not that you are required. Many other councils in NZ are continuing to have formal oral submissions heard and have also added community meetings to their process, thereby strengthening democratic engagement and offering more avenues of participation. Not less.

The contention from Council that you have had feedback in the past that the hearings process is very formal and people would like opportunities to share their views with councillors in a less formal setting” is wonderful and I’m glad some people can now happily attend a community engagement meeting. Conversely many people find the formal oral submissions in the chamber extremely important, and wish for this to continue.

Thankyou for hearing this complaint and I look forward to your reply,

Yours Sincerely,

Max Coyle

Will keep you updated by updating this post, on both the OIA and the complaint.

Max Coyle’s speech to Stop The Killing In Gaza – Hamilton NZ Rally

As-Salaam-Alaikum. Masā’ al-khayr.

The first rally I ever attended was 29 years ago. I was in a pram pushed by my parents in Napier and it was a HART rally. I was 1 year old.

The Halt All Racist Tour rallies were organised and attended by everyday kiwis who were appalled at the situation in South Africa and NZ’s complicit part in it by allowing their sports teams to come here, allowing rugby to happen while we ignored what was happening in their home country. A South africa where people were separated by the colour of their skin, a South Africa where people were routinely killed and fences separated white from black. A nation divided by race.

Apartheid literally means the state of being apart, ‘apart hood’. A people removed. Kiwis rallied against that injustice all those years ago and we rally today because that same apartheid, that same injustice, carries on in this world today. The Palestinian people are a state apart, they are refugees in their own land. Much as some of the Afrikaaners sat back and watched their rugby and their black slaves, so Israelis sit back and watch the bombing, the genocide of the Palestinian people, from their deck chairs.

We shouldn’t need to be here today. We shouldn’t live in a world where innocent children are killed indiscriminately by American munitions. But we are. We are all gathered here today to stand against this injustice. To stand against white phosphorous, an illegal munition, raining down on Palestinian children. To stand against the constant invasion by Jewish settlements on what little land the Palestinians have left. To stand against a war by a rogue state that has gone on far too long.

Israel is currently pushing for the demilitarisation of Gaza, as if Hamas will put down their weapons. The Gaza Strip is in a dire state, it is facing the risk of being uninhabitable by 2020 according to the UN — and that was before this latest devastation that has destroyed some 16,000 homes and much critical infrastructure. It will soon be absolutely impossible to create any semblance of life support for the citizens of Gaza as the rebuilding of homes, water and electricity networks, hospitals and schools becomes impossible. Israel wants this as THE bottom line before they stop the slaughter, and because it won’t happen they will instead make the blip of land uninhabitable.

As kiwis we can barely imagine our country being invaded, our homes being torn from us and becoming refugees in our own land. For many of us the closest we’ve come is reading Tomorrow When The War Began by John Marsden. And just as in that story, a story beloved by kiwis and Australians alike, the invaded citizens manage to fight back. We can fight back, and that’s why we’re here today, to say that the brutality has to stop, to say no to genocide, no to occupation and no to Zionism. To publicly call for Israels ambassador to be expelled from NZ, to call on kiwis to boycott Israeli products. Most importantly, a free Palestine.

Shukran. Ma’a as-salāmah.

Me speaking in front of the crowd which numbered almost 500 people

My speech – Submission to HCC for Separated Cycleways on Anglesea St

What follows is my speech to the Hamilton City Council Finance Committee on the 15th May, 2014 and files that were attached to the submission;

Good afternoon to her worship the Mayor of Hamilton, chairperson Rob Pascoe and Councillors, and the CFO, CIO, General Managers, Group Accountants, Managers, Directors and Advisors. 

I’m speaking today as a member and spokesperson of Cycle Action Waikato, with me is Ashley Hooper of Hamilton Urban Blog. 

Anglesea St between Knox St and Collingwood St needs repairs as you know. Anglesea (and Tristram) are the Major north-south roads through the central city, carrying high volumes of traffic (Ham City Centre Local Area Plan *HCC*)

Coming up in the City Local Area plan are plans to make the CBD more pedestrian friendly. Part of the plan is easier access to Wintec, CBD and the Transport Centre. A critical element of this is access for cyclists and as such we’re proposing the repairs include separated cycle lanes. 


The repairs include the kerbs being removed, footpaths repaired, all the trees being chopped down and WEL networks replacing infrastructure at the same time. Including cycleways in these repairs will be of a very similar cost and it is essential the work is done now rather than a very costly retrofitting being placed on ratepayers later. 

597 more people,or 15%, cycle to work daily (1,719) than take the bus (1,122) according to the 2006 census. In the 2013 census this increased to 97% (1761) more people (3570) people cycling than (1809) taking the bus. Yet in the annual plan, for 2014/15 the sums allocated for bus stops, transport integration and minor improvements are $1.58M. Road resurfacing and replacement of the road base are allocated $5Million. 

Nowhere is cycling specifically allocated for yet the more people cycling, the cheaper it is for Hamilton residents, ratepayers etc. 

Going back to the local area plan, pedestrian is mentioned 154 times, while cycling is mentioned 5 times. In one of the very few mentions of cycling in the 81 page document, the ‘sustainable design section’ states its purpose to:

“Promote sustainable transportation through provision of clearly marked / identifiable walking and cycling routes and close proximity to public transportation routes.”

It also goes on to say: The nature of Anglesea Street will change from vehicle oriented to a mixed use street with increased pedestrian priority and amenity. The aim is to improve walkability in the central city and improve connections between some of the city’s major attractors such as the cricket grounds, the Transport Centre, Wintec (west of Anglesea Street) and Casabella Lane, Barton Street, Centre Place, Downtown Plaza, Garden Place, Victoria Street, Hood…and, it says “Anglesea Street is currently a major pedestrian barrier and although it will remain a major vehicle route in the city, it will become an environment better suited to pedestrians.”

In that spirit it is also essential that pedestrians and cyclists are free of each other, as well as of vehicles. Anglesea Street is designated as a City Living Precinct, the definition of which is ‘an area with the greatest potential for transformation’.

Now one of the documents you have in front of you is an article from the Waikato Argus newspaper, published in 1913. Over 100 years ago in 1913, Hamilton City Council was looking at doing exactly what we’re proposing now, separated cycleways along a stretch of Anglesea Street. Please don’t let another young man or woman be standing here, in 2114, another 100 years on, pleading for a scrap of decent cycling infrastructure. This project is over 100 years in the making and its time it went from committee stage to action.