Monday, June 20, 2011

Getting Ready for Battle

Is this what is needed to ride safely in Australian cities now days. While I have taken liberties by adding a shield and sword shouldn't we have infrastructure that makes riding a bike feel safe.

When it comes to cycle safety many people state their own experience and don't think about the community as a whole.While we have low rates of cycling in this country, many cycle advocacy groups sometimes make the mistake of just representing their members and not looking at the potential cyclists or future cyclists.
Like many cities in Australia, Canberra has a group of devoted cyclists or bike riders, but there are many that only ride for recreation or for sport and wouldn't commute because of safety issues or the perceived safety issues as some would say.
Canberra's cyclists used to look like this......

The head of ACT Roads while being a cyclist believes that our current infrastructure of cycle lanes on 'high speed high volume roads' is fine for the 'elite commuter cyclist' but there are many in the community that wouldn't agree. You could categorised the Canberra community as a whole for cycling like this.
There would be many in Canberra that would cycle more if there were the facilities to do so, particularity around our car congested town centres and schools.
This photo captures the joy of commuting or cycling to a destination in Copehagen.......
Now you couldn't do that on a 1.5m bike lane on one of the many Canberra arterial roads. In the recent Copenhagen Bicycle Account 2008 the cyclist sense of safety rated only a 5 out 10 and that's with cycle tracks, a physically separated curb which is your standard Copenhagen style lane.

While there are better examples of physical separation in Copenhagen the Dutch certainly do it best. Isn't time that Canberra started implementing international best practice and not short sighted tokenism.


1 comment:

The Weekly Cycle said...

Hi Bicycle Canberra,
Good stuff. That guy sure does look ridiculous. The situation is very similar here in Melbourne.
I wrote about the four categories of cyclists recently here;