The vision for the massive redevelopment of the Arden precinct in North Melbourne shows a powerful commitment to active transport.
Major new bike links criss-cross the 50 hectare urban renewal site surrounding the new North Melbourne underground station already under construction.
The new routes will benefit not only the residents and workers in the precinct, but will also provide valuable new connections through to the Melbourne CBD, Docklands and the university and biomedical cluster in Parkville.
The vision also proposes a major upgrade of the Moonee Ponds Creek environment through the area, along which the busy Capital City Trail bike route travels.
The district, near the North Melbourne Football Club, has been identified for years as a prime location for a prime new employment hub close to universities and the CBD.
With the Melbourne Metro Tunnel project sinking a new station plumb in the middle of the area, the time for redevelopment has arrived.
According to the Arden Vision document, the area will accommodate more than 34,000 jobs and 15,000 residents by 2051.
“Walking, cycling and public transport will be key aspects of the day-to-day life of residents, workers and visitors moving to, from and within Arden”, the Vision says.
“Separated and continuous cycling infrastructure will be designed to ensure safer connectivity throughout the entire precinct to encourage bicycles as part of everyday transport.
Planning will also protect opportunities to connect walking, cycling and public transport users to other urban renewal precincts, including Docklands, E-Gate and Dynon. Pedestrian and cycling connections will be especially important links for accessing regional assets close to the Arden precinct, such as Parkville and Royal Park.”
Preliminary maps show a new bike route along Longford Street, and then continuing along the west of the precinct to West Melbourne station. The Queensbury Street route will continue west through the site, Fogarty Street will become a bike route through the project, and Laurens Street will upgraded.
Importantly Arden Street, already a busy bike route, will be upgraded.
The Vision predicts that because of the geography and limited road access, only 10 per cent of trips will be by private vehicles, with 30 per cent of trips by bike or walking, and 60 per cent by public transport.
Priority will be given to active and public transport to, from and within the precinct that connects Arden with the CBD, Parkville and the growing western suburbs.
Pedestrians and bike riders will have priority on key streets.
There will be provision of safe, direct and efficient on-road and off-road cycling connections to encourage bicycle use for everyday transport throughout the entire precinct.
Other elements of the Vision include:
- Enhance the Moonee Ponds Creek corridor to become a valued asset for existing and new communities and the natural environment
- Build on Parkville’s growing role as a technology, life sciences, health and education precinct
- Be protected by innovative solutions to manage flooding, make better use of water and expand spaces for recreation and biodiversity
- Deliver innovative community hubs and two to four new schools