Cycling in Sydney Australia
Is it a book , Is it a scary radio show , Is it a movie no no no, was it a kid at your door for Halloween
No its cyclists speeding of the Harbour bridge at the Harbour Bridge read on if you dare
PARENTS of pupils forced to share a footpath and a narrow roadway with cyclists outside a primary school fear children will be injured by "lycra loonies" speeding off the Harbour Bridge.
The Parents & Citizens committee at Fort Street Public School at Millers Point has called on the state government and the City of Sydney to create a bike-only lane outside the gates before a child is seriously hurt.
Parents say there have already been a number of nasty verbal clashes with cyclists outside the school on Observatory Hill.
On Thursday, a cyclist, angry that a car containing two small children had slowed down, rammed his bike into the vehicle, causing a metre-long scratch on a passenger door.
Pedestrian Council of Australia chairman Harold Scruby said it was time for authorities to scrap shared pedestrian and bike paths.
"There has to be dedicated bike paths created." Mr Scruby said. "The word 'shared' is the worst word in the road safety lexicon.
"When you have the lyrca loonies speeding off the bike lane on the Harbour Bridge, straight into the school zone in Upper Fort St, you are asking for trouble."
Parent Suzanne Betro said her two children, Sonja 12, and Jade, 10, have nearly been run down by cyclists on Upper Fort St."Some of them just ignore the fact this is a school zone," she said.
P & C president Karen Roach said the group had approached the City of Sydney and Roads and Maritime Services to separate cyclists from pedestrians.
"The bikes come flying past you on the pathway and road, just millimetres from your elbow," Ms Roach said.
"There is also a need for better signage and perhaps, enforceable speed limits for cyclists."
Roads Minister Duncan Gay said the RMS had met with the P & C committee to plan improvements to the shared path.
Peak cyclist group Bike Sydney said it is also worried about the potential for serious injury to riders and pedestrians and has written to the state government and Sydney City Council about segregating cyclists along Upper Fort St.
I got a letter from the Minster for Penrith about this a couple of days ago.
Sorry I didn't post it because there was nothing newsworthy in it.
All this would be solved if cyclists were given space on the bridge proper, as they should and as they used to have.
I do agree that a separated cycleway would help IF peds, vans, dogs and the rest were kept off it. And by the way the Bay Run looks, THAT is a dream.
A few of us have been in discussions with the Fort Street P&C over the last couple of weeks. They really want improvements in front of the school and most (including Karen quoted above) do NOT blame the cyclists. Proposals have been submitted by Bike Sydney and Sydney Council but most of the requested changes are on RMS land so this needs RMS approval and funding.
Steph from the P&C has set up an online petition to ask RMS for improvements. The Bike Sydney proposal would be best here but if that can't get up we can at least push for a few small improvements over the summer holidays that will make the area safer for all when school returns at the end of January.
The school population has doubled in two years and cyclists numbers have doubled in five. I encourage you all to get behind the P&C. Just ignore the Terror and Harold Scrubby and push the RMS for change.
How many years has that space been used by cyclists?
How many dread incidents have we heard of, to date?
And of those, how many were the cyclist rather than the pedestrian (or infrastructure) at fault?
Its always been used by cyclists, the population of both the school and the cyclists has risen though.
In any case, there is recent footage of drivers driving on the footpath because they can't be bothered waiting for oncoming traffic on upper fort st. It would amuse me greatly if that was investigated and turned out to be a parent.
The school population has doubled in two years. Cyclists numbers have doubled in maybe five, maybe three depending on which study you believe. Yes some parents behave badly in their cars but some cyclists also behave badly on their bikes. Possible improvements include
There are lots of small improvements that could be done. We just need to work with the school to put pressure on RMS.
I guess that over the same two year period the number of morning bootcampers in that spot has at least tripled.
I shake my fist at these bootcampers who drive and also want to park in and around Observatory Hill. Now seems to be a bit of a race for parents to find that now rare spot to at least kiss and drop.
I think the path down to Kent looks like it has been marked out for at least paint of lines.
We have also asked for the last 2 parking spots to be removed at the end of the bridge down ramp. These are normally taken by boot camp people and obscure the view for riders coming off the bridge. The only downside to this is that it might just encourage riders to go faster.
When riding down quiet back roads and being buzzed by cars, I sometimes think, why are cars taking these local roads and shouldn't they be using the main highway?
I wonder, when considering cyclists versus children (or even adult pedestrians), is the cyclist the aggressor - even if not deliberately so? Should we see ourselves as the danger much like we see cars as the danger in a side street?
For this particular route and given the potential congestion, maybe we should take the extra minute, forgo the thrill of a downhill slalom and turn right from the bridge, go down to Argyle and back up Kent?