A Sydney Schooling

02008-12-06 | Bicycle | 0 comments

Copenhagenize.com: Copenhagenizing Sydney… Um… sort of
The Sydney Morning Herald reports that Sydney is planning shared bike lanes/sidewalks along the busy College St. in the Central Business District as a part of their strategy to increase cycling by 500% over the next 10 years.

As you can see in the artist’s rendering above, bikes will share the widened footpath with pedestrians. Councillor John McInerney, chair of the council’s traffic committee, wants to “mirror the European experience”.

I think he should look up ‘mirroring’ in the dictionary. Sydney, apparently, is flush with cash compared to other Australian councils and yet THIS is what they come up with? I don’t understand why they don’t create separated bike lanes on the street, leaving the pedestrians alone, if they truly wish to ‘mirror’ us.

Shared spaces like this will work in countries that are used to the bicycle in the urban landscape like Denmark, Holland, Germany, Belgium, Sweden, etc. And only in certain areas. In a city where people are still surprised to see a bicycle, it’s a recipe for irritation and aggravation.

By merely chucking the bicycle up onto the footpath, you are hardly elevating it to its rightful position as a respected and feasible form of transport. You’re just marginalising cycling in a different way.

Agreed. In related news – and why Sydney needs real functioning bike paths:

Australia is now the fattest nation in the world, with more than 9 million adults rated as obese or overweight. [1]


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