Frustrated parents have accused Tauranga City Council of "drowning in bureaucracy" while children on a busy Mount Maunganui street are put at risk.
But the council said it had undertaken independent safety reviews of the road layout and none of them said the road was unsafe in its current configuration.
Michael Dance presented a submission to the council during the public forum today regarding the safety of Links Ave and pleaded for "significant change right here, right now".
Dance said the street had become overrun with traffic, buses, pedestrians and cyclists, particularly schoolchildren. He asked the council to create a wider separated space to better protect cyclists.
Links Ave is popular with people travelling between Golf and Girven Rds, often by using Farm St also.
In 2019, the council turned parking spaces on the south sides of Links Ave into a peak-hour bus clearway, with a 2.5m shared path on the north side used by cyclists, pedestrians, skateboarders and scooter riders.
In March last year the community presented a petition signed by 110 people to address safety concerns.
Dance was joined by three others including Karen Laidlaw and James Petterson to complain that "nothing tangible" had happened as a result.
Dance said the council was "drowning in bureaucracy".
"That's a huge frustration for us. We find there are similar concerns in Matapihi and Pāpāmoa. It's not just Arataki, it's a region-wide issue."
Dance said he and the others were working parents and it was difficult to always come to council meetings, read the documentation and learn the process between the council and NZ Transport Agency Waka Kotahi "but we do it".
"We don't have time to come here again and again.
"All of our kids are and community are paying a huge price every day for 30 minutes of marginally better traffic flow."
The presentation ran, with tolerance from commission chairwoman Anne Tolley, for 12 minutes instead of the newly allocated five-minute timeframe, a move introduced by the commissioners in the last council meeting.
Dance said the community wanted a minimum 1.5m of separation between cyclists and traffic.
"We don't want any runaround. We are parents, a voice. We'd like a commissioner to volunteer to own this issue."
Tolley repeatedly called for Dance to wrap up the presentation, saying: "You had 12 minutes, not five, but it's a safety issue."
Following Dance's presentation, Farm St resident Keith Ellery asked the commissioner to consider relocating the existing temporary bus interchange.
"There have been three accidents which I have personally attended on Farm St over the last year and a growing number of people walking or cycling to school. All this is going on in a narrow suburban street, a street that can't handle all of those users."
Ellery asked for the temporary Farm St bus interchange to be permanently relocated to Girven Rd, which he believed was more suitable.
"We urge you not to even consider Farm St as an option."
Tolley responded by saying they would look at the issue.
After the meeting, Petterson told the Bay of Plenty Times the community's issue was not so much that the street had become so busy with traffic and the bus lane but that schoolchildren were put "at risk".
"Everyone else is safe on that street but the kids aren't. That's what we can't understand. They keep saying it's safe but it's not."
Dance said, after the meeting, the community was setting up a Facebook page where people could report incidents in the area to help show how serious the situation had become.
He said he did not want Links Ave to become a fatal stretch of road.
Tauranga council director of transport Brendan Bisley said in a written statement the ''commissioners have undertaken to meet with the Links Ave representatives on-site to discuss their concerns further''.
He said Links Ave was performing many roles and traffic volumes had doubled to about 5,000 to 5,500 vehicles per day due to the B2B project which had been delayed.
This meant the council was unable to reinstate the old road layout that some residents had requested, he said.
''Council needs to balance all of these aspects and ensure the street is able to provide the best level of service for often competing needs. Achieving this balance is difficult and not all groups are able to have exactly what they would ideally like.''
The council had also undertaken independent safety reviews, which stated the road was not unsafe in its current configuration.
''Which is why the street is still operating with the bus lane and shared path layout.''