By the end of the 19th century, bicycles were an established form of transport in Europe. At the end of WW-II, as European wealth grew, automobiles began to sideline bicycles until 1973 when, in the wake of the OPEC oil crisis, Europe realised its vulnerability and began to rebuild its bicycle infrastructure.
But cycling was mostly active on flat land. It was not until the more recent introduction of effective ebikes that hilly regions like Auckland began to build a cycling infrastructure. Unfortunately, Auckland Transport makes up its own design principles, and does so badly, rather than learn from others like the EU.
In Europe, the cycle highways follow the rivers and the foreshore, they are far from motor vehicles and become tourist attractions. Called EuroVelo, it is a network of 15 cycle routes that connects the whole of Europe and currently totals 45,000 km. They are not along arterial or principal roads, but on quiet, safe bike routes.
Why can’t NZ do the same?