Bicycle Network: Bicycle Tasmania Membership
Launceston City Council pauses bicycle network rollout
On the 27th June 2011, Launceston City Council resolved that the council defer all work on the bike strategy to enable a reviewed strategy to be prepared in consultation with the Aldermen and the community. This followed council infrastructure services director Harry Galea’s recommendation that stages one and two of the road works aimed at improving the safety of the road using blackspot funding be completed.
Tamar Bicycle Users Group had this to say about the developments:
“This is an extremely disappointing decision, particularly as the Aldermen have signed off on a number of strategies and plans to develop bike riding in Launceston. It perhaps results from the speed of the rollout (imposed by funding timeframes) which left insufficient time for consultation and “sharing the vision”, allowing some people to focus on the negatives of projects”.
See the minutes of the council meeting here and the media report here.
Local Government Election ad shoot features a bicycle
Tuesday 28th June brought a chilly yet clear morning to Hobart and if you happened to be passing through Battery point you would have discovered that a street had been closed to bikes only. An ad for the upcoming local government elections allegedly features a girl on a bike riding with a big blank how to vote card. Investigations to the Tasmanian Electoral Commission, Hobart City Council and local bike friendly Aldermen has not yet given us a clue as to who is doing this. Please send through an email if you know.
Bike projects not spared from Tasmanian budget blues
The Tasmanian state budget seems not to have spared trails and bikeways funding with no evidence of the Sport and Recreation ‘Trails and Bikeways’ funding continuing. The Tasmanian Walking and Cycling for Active Transport strategy has not yet received any implementation funding. $151 Million has been allocated by the state government to the roads program for 2011-2012 but bicycle infrastructure does not appear get a mention. This is surely a fine example of how much work Bicycle Tasmania has to do in order to educate treasury as to the savings investing in Bicycle Infrastructure will achieve. Ironically, $15 and $5 Million were allocated to the construction of new car parks for the Launceston General Hospital and North West Regional Hospital from the Health Budget.
Ride on water? GASP Project Continues
The colourful boardwalk has been stretching across the water near the Derwent Entertainment centre on the Brooker highway and looks to be getting closer to completion. For more information check out the GASP! website.
‘Why Ride’ campaign feedback please
The ‘Why Ride’ Campaign is edging closer to a start and the Tasmanian Bicycle Council is looking for your feedback on the final designs. The campaign is showcasing everyday bike riders and sharing why they ride. Any ideas will be appreciated.
National Bicycling Community
This initiative led by the Amy Gillett Foundation has been progressing quickly with a strategy drafted at the last major meeting in Sydney. Member organisations, industry and competitive cycling organisations have come together for the first time in recognition for the need to work with each other to make Australia a true bicycling nation. The organisations will meet again in September 2011. Bicycle Tasmania is being represented through the Tasmanian Bicycle Council at this important initiative.
UTAS cycling habits survey
Researchers, Professor Andrew Palmer and Ms Peta Hitchens, from the Menzies Research Institute Tasmania are inviting you to participate in a research study to determine the cycling habits of regular cyclists and the risks and costs of cycling accidents in Tasmania.
The study involves a short questionnaire over the telephone. The purpose of the study is to describe the cycling habits of regular cyclists in Tasmania and assess the risk and costs of having a major or minor accident while bicycle riding. We have identified a need for real-life information on cycling habits and accidents in Tasmania to inform decision making in the promotion of cycling for health and as a carbon-neutral mode of transport.
In addition to an accurate assessment of cycling habits of regular cyclists and the risk of cycling accidents, this study will identify previously unrecognised bicycle accident ‘black spots’.
The study aims to overcome the significant issue of under-reporting of serious accidents in police statistics and we envisage that the research findings will lead to targeted safety improvements. You have been invited to participate in the study as you are a regular and frequent cyclist. The researchers are particularly interested in your experience of cycling in Tasmania, and are interested in talking to you even if you have not been involved in any major or minor accidents in the past. If you are interested in taking part in this study, please send an email to email@example.com or call Peta Hitchens (03 6226 7753) and the researchers will forward to you an information sheet, consent form and reply paid envelope.
No need for that Fluro Vest
Fashion conscious bike riders can breathe a sigh of relief with a survey finding that flashing lights and reflective anklets or knee straps are the most effective way of being seen at night.
Flawed evidence confirms Helmets are good for you
The Journal of the Australasian College of Road Safety has published a letter by Medical Epidemiologist Tim Churches that disproves the paper by Chris Rissel and Alex Voukelatos which concluded that ‘there was a marked decline in head injuries among pedal cyclists before the introduction of mandatory helmet legislation’. The Journal has since retracted the article. One can conclude that while helmets do play a role in deterring people from riding, there is numerous other barriers that will have far greater impact on rider numbers.
Further information and discussion can be found on the following websites:
RACT Supporting Active Transport Campaign
Do you know someone who drives and would like to participate in a focus group contributing to an active transport campaign coming soon?
Healthy By Design for Bikes
The Heart Foundation has developed a broader approach to health through recognizing the tremendous impact the built environment has on how active people are in there daily lives. Bicycle Tasmania recently met with the Heart Foundation and will no doubt be working together in the future.
Trails and Bikeways program needs your voice
The investment made by Sport and Recreation into the Trail and Bikeways Grant Program over the last four years is at risk in budget cuts.
Launceston City Council needs your encouragement
It appears that Launceston City Council aldermen may be wavering in their support for continuing the roll out of bike infrastructure in the city. If you want to see the continuing roll out of bike infrasrtructure, including trails, parking stands and lanes, please sign our online petition, and write or email the examiner and the aldermen. Sign our online petition now!
It appears that the aldermen may be wavering in their support for continuing the roll out of bike infrastructure in the city. They have been concerned at the reaction from residents, motorists and some bike riders to the two hot spots of penquite road and normanstone road. While everyone realises that normanstone road had some major problems, these were either fixed or were to be fixed by the time the aldermen passed their motion to return the road to its original condition. Thankfully commonsense has been maintained to some degree and bike lanes have been retained where they fit easily.
in the case of penquite road, the independent engineers’ report found that the works will “improve safety for all road users”, and suggested only minor changes, which have been taken up. However, the aldermen want another public meeting before they finalise the works and continue further along penquite road.
We have made the point to the Mayor and Council staff that this meeting needs to be properly run and not be another embarrassment. Unfortunately no one is holding public meetings about the positive side of the bike lanes. The Council has developed a wider consultation process that includes street meetings that we can be involved in. There are more lanes to be rolled out including mulgrave st, hobart road and ashleigh avenue (above salisbury crescent). There is a dilemma about lanes: do we put them on wide roads where everyone rides without a problem anyway or do the council put them where they narrow roads but make it safer for bike riders?
Initially we need a mix of both so that we can encourage more people to ride but with the money available they can’t go everywhere. There will also be a time lag before there is a take up of riding and the critics then say that they are a waste of money – it’s catch 22! If you want to see the continuing roll out of bike infrasrtructure, including trails, parking stands and lanes, please sign our online petition, and write or email the examiner and the aldermen. We know that the aldermen are looking for responses and any form of short letter will help. Some members have already provided well argued rational letters and these have been well received. On the other hand there have been ill informed outpourings from people who don’t like change.
Please help to provide the aldermen with confidence to continue what they have signed off to do in the community plan, the parking and sustainable transport strategy and hopefully now the gehl report.
The addresses are:
Mark it “attention mayor and aldermen” and it will be circulated to all.
South Arm Highway
DIER is in the planning stage of an upgrade of the South Arm Highway (between Oceana drive and Pass Road) and there are no plans for bike lanes or wider shoulders to be included. This is a big issue considering the road is a bottleneck and big disincentive to cyclists with no other possible optional routes available. It is the highway or nothing to get to/from Lauderdale. If this affects or interests you, please get in touch with us. Direct lobbying of DIER might also be an option - we are seeking more information and will keep you up to date on who to act on this issue.
Sandy Bay Road Petition
Hobart City Council was presented with a petition of 2071 signatures in support of the proposed cycle/walkway along Sandy Bay Rd on Tuesday 15th February.
Deputy Lord Mayor, Alderman Helen Burnet, who presented the petition at Tuesday’s Council meeting said the number of petitioners offering their support for the cycle way was a clear sign of overwhelming support, and in contrast to petitions tabled in September 2010 asking for retention of parking.
The petition received stated that the undersigned ‘Support the current consultation process in regard to the Sandy Bay Walking and Cycling Project and the proposed designs for the cycle facilities and road infrastructure changes ‘.
Alderman Burnet said:
“It is very encouraging to see the widespread public support for the concept of a cycleway along Sandy Bay Rd. Signatories are from Sandy Bay to other areas of our city and beyond. The very strong show of public support for improved cycle infrastructure along Sandy Bay Rd should be a clear message to all that there is widespread support for the current proposal and the extensive consultation already undertaken.
Utmost in my mind is the safety of people riding to and from work, for recreation and we know full well that the current situation can and should be improved.
As the Council vote on the project draws near I encourage my fellow Aldermen to acknowledge the overwhelming community support for the Cycle/Walk Way.”
The design has raised controversy due to on street parking in some places being replaced a by bi-directional Copenhagen style Cycleway and on-road cycle lanes.
Chair of the Tasmanian Bicycle Council Liam Correy, said that while opposition to the proposed design had focused on the loss of car parking, it is interesting to note that a report commissioned by the group ‘Citizens opposed to the Sandy Bay Road Bi-directional Cycle Way’ recommended that parking would have to be removed for improved outcomes for all road users.
“I think we have a clear picture that there is strong community support for the Cycle/Walk way and I look forward to the near future when families and people not so confident with riding on the road can make the trip by bike from Marieville Esplanade to the beach at lower Sandy Bay.
“Opponents to the proposal have unfortunately played with people’s fears about change to their advantage, but thankfully the community has remained in support of the project”.
Bicycle Tasmania President Jeff Dunn, said experience in Melbourne and Sydney and shown that such a facility would be hugely popular in no time and after a few months people would see the significant benefits.
Other councils developing cycleways around the world have initially met significant levels of largely unfounded opposition. I hope people can see the overwhelming benefits of adding this cycle way to the growing network in Hobart”.
'Why Ride?' Active Transport Campaign
Humphrey's Rivulet Route (Hobart)
The favoured route linking Tolosa Park to the Glenorchy CBD and providing an off road link to Northgate shopping complex and the intercity cycleway for residents, students and visitors.
Sandy Bay Rd
Sandy Bay Rd is a key route for bicycle riders into the Hobart CBD from the South from the Suburbs of Sandy Bay, Taroona and Kingston