Bicycle Network: Metro Routes
Inner: Rathdowne St
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- Yarra, Melbourne
This route runs from Park St in Princes Hill (Mel Ref 29 K11) along Rathdowne St to Victoria St (Mel Ref 43 J6) at the edge of the CBD.
The development of a high quality bicycle/car parking lane
This 3km route is now one of the most developed bicycle/car parking lanes.
It gives an idea of how much a standard painted bike lane can be improved using the currently available and accepted traffic management treatments.
The route now carries around 500 riders in the two hours of the morning peak - a high rate for an on-road route. The improvements on the route have reduced the number of riders who use the paths through the park which runs alongside the route. The route has a number of natural advantages in particular its width and the direct connection to the CBD grid at Exhibition Street.
Step by step
|Bike lanes south of Princes Street were marked out by the City of Melbourne in late in 2001.||The City of Yarra followed suit in the northern section.|
The initial project installed a 1.8m bicycle/car parking lane between two travel lanes and the permanent kerbside parking. The wide travel lanes were narrowed to make room for the bike lanes. At 1.8m wide these lanes are generous. They are wider than the bike lanes in St Kilda Road for example which are at the minmum width in the Guidelines. The Guidelines recommend a lane width from the edge of the parking of 1.6m to 2.5m.
|The City of Melbourne has from time to time gone back to upgrade the route. Stand up lanes were added through to the intersections. Some of these are quite narrow. The stand up lanes were subsequently coloured in brown then the national standard green paint.|
At this stage the City considered moving the bicycle space kerbside and establishing a Swanston Street style separated facility. This move was put on hold. One reason is that the kerbside parking lane is, in some sections, cobbled in bluestone which has a heritage value.
Instead the City replaced the paint between the bike lane and the travel lane with a tactile edge lining or rumble strip.This treatment has now been continued to LaTrobe Street in the CBD.
|The City of Yarra has widened the line between the bike and travel lane with a chevron treatment and extended the marked lane southbound in a section that was previously unmarked.|
The following sequence shows the first lane marking, followed by green paint, followed by a rumble edge and the removal of some bluestone.
Improvements on the route could include extending the rumble edge in the northern section, extending the green paint treatments and improving the approaches to Princes Street from both north and south.
Connections to the route from the Capital City Trail and into the CBD along LaTrobe and Exhibition will increase the attractiveness of the route.
Bicycle Network Victoria supports a separated lane for this important route to the North of the CBD. There are a number of types of separation that could be used. Tram type separators could be trialled or the parking lane moved and a Copenhagen-style lane constructed.
Rathdowne St provides a connection to the CBD as it runs into Exhibition St while Canning St, which runs parallel, ends at the Carlton Gardens.
Rumble edge lanes fitted to Rathdowne
June 08. The job is taking a long time to implement but there are now substantial sections with rumble edges and green paint. Some of the old green paint sections have not been replaced yet.
Feasibility Study Announced
Jul 07 In great news for bike riders the Melbourne City Council has begun a feasibility study into putting Copenhagen-style lanes on Rathdowne and Queensberry streets in Carlton as well as Albert Street, East Melbourne.
You can find out more in a related article that appeared in The Age on July 28 2007.