Wellington City councillors have voted in favour of adopting a new bike network, which will expand the current 23km of cycleways across the capital to 166km.
It brings to life the big $226m cycling spend councillors agreed on last year when they set the council's 10-year budget.
The plan is made up of a primary network to provide connections into the city as well as a secondary network to build infrastructure around town centres and schools.
The network also features an extensive waterfront cycleway encompassing the existing path around the inner harbour and its bays and then extending further around the eastern and southern suburbs.
The cycleways will be rolled out through a transitional programme with plastic post separators and changes to road markings using paint. They will have a pop-up feel to them.
This allows the network to be established more quickly and so changes to the design can be made in real-time before permanent grade-separated cycleways are implemented.
At a Planning and Environment council committee meeting today councillor Tamatha Paul said climate change was the elephant in the room.
"Cars make up a massive chunk of our carbon emissions and the biggest thing we can do as a city is get people onto buses and on bikes and on foot where they are able to.
"That means disabled people and older people, who need to use a car and rely on using a car, can get to where they need to go safely and quickly."
Paul hoped the new network would encourage women, gender diverse people, children, and older people to feel safe enough to ride bikes.
"It's an investment into transport equity into safety of all people not just dudes in lycra," she said.
Mayor Andy Foster said the plan was part of an integrated package to accommodate tens of thousands more people as the city grows.
"Biking is not the answer to our transport solutions but it absolutely is part of the answer."
He said cycling was important to reduce congestion and emissions, for good health and transport choices, and for people who choose to cycle to be safe.
Southern Ward councillors gave their support for the network with a word of caution, in light of the Island Bay cycleway debacle.
Councillor Fleur Fitzsimons acknowledged there was community support for the plan.
"But that support is tenuous and this council must not take that support for granted. I'm not convinced that Wellington City Council recognises how challenging and ambitious this plan is, given the hurdles and obstacles we are facing in the community."
Councillor Laurie Foon said it was a massive milestone but also added: "We're learning as we go and it's not going to be an easy ride."
The only councillor who voted against adopting the plan was Nicola Young who said she was still "scarred" by the Island Bay cycleway.
She was also concerned the network was coming at a time when many businesses were "on their knees".
"It is too much too soon."