The motion to adopt Yarra City Council’s 10-year transport strategy was passed unanimously at its 12 July meeting.
The new Moving Forward strategy lays the groundwork for transport planning over the next ten years, with a focus on four outcomes:
- increased use of space-efficient and environmentally sustainable forms of transport
- enhanced places for people on Yarra's streets
- increased independent mobility for vulnerable road users
- reduced car use for trips within or through Yarra.
The council's strategy notes that rates of bike riding in Yarra and inner Melbourne, following a boom in the 1990s, has generally started to plateau. The mode share for active and public transport in the area has increased by only 2 per cent across 10 years. People identifying as female remain under-represented, comprising only 32 per cent of people riding bikes in the area.
The strategy lays out a bold and exciting list of transport-focussed policies, which includes a commitment to 'prioritise walking, cycling and using public transport over car use' (page 5).
Perhaps most promising for riders is the ‘New Deal For Cycling’ (page 42), a policy package that sets out the building of fit-for-purpose infrastructure across Yarra, as well as safer vehicle parking to better protect riders.
The transport strategy was open for community feedback in early 2022. Bicycle Network also provided feedback on the draft and will continue to engage with Yarra City Council where possible.
This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.