Sydney, NSW & Adelaide, SA
Prospects for improved bike access over Sydney Harbour Bridge took a major step forward last month, when the NSW Heritage Council approved designs for a project more than two decades in the making.
The Sydney Harbour Bridge cycleway project is set to bypass the 55 steps riders currently have to traverse by foot to access the iconic bridge, which has been a considerable bottleneck in the city’s bike network.
Cycling advocacy group Bicycle Networks says the steps are a particularly big “roadblock for children, people with prams or disabilities, elderly adults and would-be riders unable to make the ascent”.
“Bicycle Network has actively campaigned for decades for a ramp to be built at the northern end of the bridge to relieve this source of frustration for Sydney bike riders,” the group says.
An environmental approvals process will now be undertaken by Transport for NSW and is expected to take up to 18 months.
City of Sydney Access Strategy update
City of Sydney’s updated and recently released access strategy and action plan includes a world class green gateway to the city along Broadway, more space on streets for people walking and better public transport connections for residents in Green Square among its top priorities.
The council says the revised strategy, its first update since 2012, “provides a blueprint for delivering on what our communities have told us – they want Sydney to be a city for walking and cycling with better public transport and fewer cars”.
It includes transforming Broadway, an inner city road, into a green gateway, complete with a cycleway and light rail – although the feasibility of the latter is to be confirmed – and lowering speed limits, with a 30kmh maximum in the city centre and high activity areas.
It proposes a maximum speed limit 40kmh for the LGA’s streets “as soon as possible, to help us achieve ‘vision zero’ – a city where there are no deaths or serious injuries”.
City of Sydney Mayor Clover Moore said: “We’ve come a long way since 2012. George Street’s transformation from a traffic clogged arterial route to a destination in its own right is nothing short of remarkable.”
“Reducing unnecessary traffic on our streets is paramount. With WestConnex built and the first Metro nearing completion there is a unique opportunity to reshape how we move around the city.
“We continue to expand our network of separated cycleways and give more space back to people, creating world class streets that support business and economic activity,” the Lord Mayor said.
Further Consultation on Oxford Street East Cycleway
Plans to transform Sydney’s Oxford Street into a cycling and pedestrian-friendly thoroughfare has gone back to the community for another round of consultation, prompted by ongoing opposition from local businesses.
The latest engagement campaign by the NSW Government includes an online survey, which will close on 7th August, as well as door knocking businesses in the area.
Strategic plans released by the Government earlier this year include a two-way bike lane along the southern side of Oxford Street – between Taylor Square and Paddington Gates – reducing traffic lanes from four to two, and retaining the two bus lanes.
As an alternative, business have proposed lowering speed limits along Oxford Street from 50kmh to 40kmh, and have indicated they would also consider 30kmh.
The discussions about the eastern section of Oxford Street coincide with the imminent construction of an Oxford Street West Cycleway, which is closer to the city. It will connect with the Oxford Street East Cycleway to improve the cycling and pedestrian link between Bondi Junction and the Sydney CBD.
Port Adelaide Link
A cycling link between central Adelaide and the Port Adelaide tourist wharf district will be enhanced as part of a $51 million project to reinstate a section of rail line.
Work is set to start next month to restore the rail line to a new railway station in the Port Adelaide commercial centre.
The project will relocate an existing rail trail to adjacent streets – before it reconnects with the current trail on the Port River waterfront – and will rejuvenate the dock precinct as a location for cyclists.
The venture is being undertaken by the PTP Alliance, a collaboration of private enterprises and the State Department for Infrastructure and Transport to provide public transport solutions.