Frankston City is in the act of remaking itself and getting people on bikes is one of the big ideas for the future of this major centre on the southern fringe of metropolitan Melbourne.
A designated metropolitan activity centre in an attractive coastal location, Frankston has struggled to live up to its promise as a major attractor of employment opportunities, of talent to fill those jobs, and of housing for such a community.
But plans are afoot to develop a new 20-year plan for where the city could go in the future.
As well as strengthening the built form and character of the place, it wants stronger arts, entertainment and culture.
Also on the list are people-focused streets, transformation of the Nepean Highway into an iconic boulevard, and the creation of a safe and convenient bike riding network.
"Frankston is a popular cycling destination, with many fitness and recreational cyclists taking to key cycling corridors, such as the Nepean Highway, on the weekend. In contrast, cycling for everyday transport trips is much less popular,” says the Emerging Ideas Paper recently released for public comment.
"Creating a safe and connected cycling network provides choice for people to make everyday trips without getting in the car. Every person that takes a cycling trip in Frankston means one less car on the road or in the car park.”
Among the Emerging Ideas for bikes are:
- Playne Street bike lanes: Providing separated bike lanes along Playne Street will help connect the Frankston-Baxter Trail to the foreshore and into the city centre.
- Nepean Highway bike lanes: Nepean Highway is one of Frankston’s busiest bike corridors. It’s also a busy road for through traffic. Providing separated bike lanes along Nepean Highway will improve cycling safety and comfort, particularly those who currently do not feel comfortable riding on the road. It will also improve the interface between the shops and roadway, buffering pedestrians from the busy traffic.
- Beach street bike lanes: Beach Street is an important east-west street that connects to Frankston Major Activity Centre (FMAC) and the railway station. Installing separated bike lanes from Cranbourne Road to the railway line, and over it to Kananook Creek, would provide a safe cycling option for residents in the north-east of FMAC to access shops and services, and the foreshore.
- Baxter Trail: The Frankston-Baxter Trail currently terminates at Playne Street and Cranbourne Road, forcing pedestrians and cyclists to navigate a complex road environment to reach the railway station or city centre. Connecting the trail through to the station and up to the Dandenong Road East shared path will make it easier and safer for people to ride to the railway station or further afield.
- Dandenong Rd West: There is an existing shared path along Dandenong Road East that currently stops at Cricklewood Avenue. There is a proposed extension to the railway station. This extension will improve access for those living in the residential area to the east of this path. Installing a shared path along Dandenong Road West would provide access to the industrial and business precinct north of FMAC and to the west of the railway line.
This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.