Planning for an upgrade to the Mornington Peninsula Freeway through Rosebud presents a not-to-be missed opportunity for local bike route upgrades.
The upgrade will add new lanes to the freeway between Jetty Road and Boneo Road.
New intersections, including a possible overpass, are proposed for the two road crossings.
In Victoria, new freeways through urbanised areas now typically include a shared path, so this would be expected as part of this project.
However, this upgrade is a Federal Government initiative, being undertaken by the Victoria Government, so the community may have to make clear that a shared path along the corridor is a requirement.
The Federal Government has previously committed $65m to the project, with $5m towards a new signalised pedestrian crossing at Jetty Road which is set to be delivered in advance of the freeway upgrade.
Major Roads Project Victoria is now seeking preliminary input from the public as it works on the planning and development phase of the upgrade.
It is seeking views on access, efficiency, safety, landscaping and other issues via a survey and interactive map.
An estimated 1.6 million domestic tourists visit the Mornington Peninsula each summer, many of them bike riders, and many more would like to ride the attractive region if there was more suitable infrastructure.
Although this proposed upgrade will take the duplicated freeway from Jetty Road to Boneo Road, there is a reservation in place for a connection through to Melbourne Road at Blairgowrie in future decades.
That is when the real value of a bike path along the freeway will be realised, linking Arthur’s Seat through Rosebud, Tootgarook, Rye to Blairgowrie, as well as opening up local routes into and from these suburbs.
Jetty Road is already a vital link for riders exploring the Peninsula, but is currently hobbled by the appalling roundabout design at the junction with the freeway.
If you live or visit this region make sure you give input to the consultation and remind the government that bike facilities should be included in this project as a matter of course.
This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.