Bike paths scrapped in Northern Beaches

Council plans for cycleways in the Northern Beaches have been canned following a vocal rebuke by residents.

Over several years, the Northern Beaches Council has prepared a draft plan to identify public domain improvements for Avalon Beach, a coastal suburb in Sydney’s outer north. The plan included 2 bike paths through the village. The draft was open to public consultation.

However, the council received backlash from local resident groups at a public meeting later in the year and received hundreds of submissions critical of the bike paths. Resident groups argued that the community did not want “a CBD-style cycleway carving through the pedestrian village”. Opposition to the proposed bike lanes dates as far back as 2020.

The revised plan, adopted on Tuesday, did not include the bike paths.

Northern Beaches Mayor Michael Regan told the Sydney Morning Herald that the idea had proven too divisive to proceed, despite the likelihood that the bike lane would be well-used and accepted once installed.

Community opposition to new and planned bike lanes has, unfortunately, been a trend recently, with controversies in Melbourne, and across the ditch in Wellington.

It is unclear what the next steps will be for the Northern Beaches Council for providing bike paths across the suburb.

This article was made possible by the support of Bicycle Network's members who enable us to make bike riding better in Australia.