Cycling in Sydney Australia
Riding yesterday from Willoughby to Alexandria I enjoyed the cycleway on Burke Street from Taylor Sq to Philip St Redfern. However from then on to the cycleway on Burke Rd it was a tough ride on the footpath and a complex cross of the Green Sq intersection. I must be in a dream of Amsterdam or Copenhagen where one will be able to land at Sydney airport, pull out their folding bike or rent a bike and cycle up Burke Rd and Burke St without interruption all the way to town for business or pleasure.
Why there is no connection between the Burkes?
Why it takes so long to act on it?
And why I expect too much from politicians and Bureaucrat ?
"Why there is no connection between the Burkes?"
Easy - the RTA or whatever name they are going on with these days
"And why I expect too much from politicians and Bureaucrat ?"
Well teh City of Sydney are doing what they can, and are putting good money up to do it, but they are only 1 council and do not own the roads or intersections.
Want to do something write to Duncan Gay, tell him you want the intersection fixed
I posted an email to Mr Gay and all City of Sydney councillors. Will keep you updated.
Well its in full swing now - Share paths all the way between Phillip St and Green Square. Im wondering if its a case of left side of Bourke St is one way south and right side of Bourke St is one way north?
For the moment though to avoid Bourke St right now until the sharepath is built - going south I like to turn right into Phillip - then left at Young - then take your time crossing McEvoy - go through the back of an appartment area to get to Short St - right there - Allen St - then Mandable St. Totally unsign posted - but maybe that's because they are wanting to do the share path.
Hmmm, doesn't appear anything in the short (but vital) space between Botany and Wyndham, probably due to the fact there are no pedestrian crossing facilities on the western side of the Wyndham st intersection (with NSW Fire and Rescue on the sth west corner) to piggy back a shared crossing to.
Hopefully that gets sorted.
Will have to see what the end product looks like before abandoning my hard fought for strategy below...
They'll definitely need to sort that out. I imagine that the RTA won't like a pedestrian phase at the Wyndham Street lights one bit ("smooth traffic flow" shouldn't be hampered by things like people being able to safely cross a street, don't you know?) and hopefully the City of Sydney is working on a case to fix this.
Until this is fixed, the Mandible/Allen/Short Street detour will remain the main route past the Green Square mess, so the council should work on the signage along this detour as a stopgap. Just some simple route signs, as well as clearing up the ambiguity at the end of Mandible Street between the cycleway and Botany Road (i.e. Is it a shared path? Does one leave the cycleway and re-join the road for that last 100 metres? etc.) Personally I use the path at this bit of Mandible Street to avoid a clutter of multiple crossings and "mode" changes, not knowing whether it's legal or not.
I like to turn right into Phillip - then left at Young
Ha! You poo-pooed that way when I suggested it last year
It's not so bad after all, and McEvoy can be busy, but you can often time it just so!
Yeah - I never considered Phillip until i was doing trivia over at the Botany View - getting there did Philip - Morehead - Buckland - so I instantly loved the idea of Phillip - Young compared to Bourke St and the random turning cars left and right. Also there seem to be a lot more buses and trucks on Bourke St now adding to the mess that Bourke St is.
I find after the relaxation and safety of the cycleway on Bourke St - i just don't feel like the stress of mixing it on Bourke - so quiet streets where you don't have to worry so much is better.
Looking more at the plan of sharepaths - im actually worried because of all the bus stops next to the appartment buildings are always packed full of people - i really do think something avoiding Bourke St altogether might be better.
I ride on the road. Going south (downhill) I take the lane, keep up with traffic, and just hold my position in line. Hardly ever an issue, BUT you have to ride defensively. Ride in the gutter, and you will get pushed past. Past McEvoy turn off where most traffic turns right, I ride in the right side of the left lane to discourage people trying to cut me ovff by overtaking me then trying to get back in the left to pass the stationary right turning traffic. Be assertive and it works. I did learn this trick the hard way though. Further down, as a courtesy I change to the right lane just before O'Dea ave as the light often goes red and most cars in the left lane turn left into O'Dea. This buys you some car 'love'. Then I stay in the right lane so i am ready to pick up the right turn lane across the Green Sq intersection. If you travel around the same time each day, and act like a "most" cars (ie no running reds, no front filtering, ride in middle of lane) you usually see the same cars most days and there is some mutual respect. The downside of travelling at the same time each day and seeing the same cars is if you dont give some love you wont get any back.
Citybound, while uphill, seems to be ok to travel at traffic speeds too as the lights are phased against Bouke Rd - ie they are red - a lot. So a sprint between red lights (then a rest) is generally ok. Due to already being on the western side of the road a bit of footpath action might relieve some stress, particularly between Green Sq and McEvoy.
If not up to traffic speeds, or especially in heavy rain (like last week) the western footpath is generally ok at slower speeds. It is this that is being made into the share path, but is still illegal to ride on at the moment. Has anyone ever been pulled up though, and there are already some shared path logos painted on the path so might make a decent defence attempt in court.
Thanks for the lengthy response. Your first two paragraphs sounds more like a war strategy so I'll leave it to you, the experience soldier.
In regards to riding on the western footpath which is the "Shared path": yesterday the signs were clear to me but you are right it is illegal and the council or RTA are encouraging a rider to commit an offense.
And where is Bicycle NSW: asleep at the handlebar.
There should be an organised mass ride up and down Burke Street's western footpath to make a point.
It was a bit of a battle at first. The McEvoy intersection was also one of the main catalysts for now runing a video camera full time (of late everything just gets deleted for want of anything interesting - a good thing).
So while I am comfortable with it now, it took a while to find what worked through there. Also need a decently geared bike downhill as the afternoon traffic can flow so need something that will do 55 km/h, yeah I know the limit is 50. Shhhh....
While a compromise, the shared path between the two will be a huge improvement and mean off road travel from Woolloomoolloo Bay down past the airport and Botany Bay to the Shire, and via the Cooks River CW out to Homebush Bay.
Getting there. Slowly.
On the other missing link - between the Bourke Road cycleway and the Coward Street shared path - the latest info I could find was from BIKEast in July 2011.
BIKEast endorses the bi-directional off-road cycleway indicated in the Inner City Regional Bike Plan Implementation Strategy (which SSRoC, of which Botany Bay is a member, has signed up for) along the length of Bourke Street, Mascot. This would be consistent with the City of Sydney's cycleway north of Gardeners Road.
However the council's proposal falls well short of this standard, proposing on-road painted lines instead of a cycleway (for better or worse), with riders using the pedestrian crossings at both the Coward Street and Gardeners Road traffic lights. The main sticking point is that the Council proposal means a 3-way crossing at both intersections, since the pedestrian crossings only exist on one side of Bourke Street and no new crossings are proposed. Clearly this is impractical, and may actually be worse than the status quo (i.e. no cycle facilities at all). It would provide neither for experienced riders, who will quite rightly ignore a cycle lane requiring two dismounts and 3-way crossings, nor for the much larger group of "potential riders" who may commute to work if they were separated from cars.
Once the City of Sydney install their new shared path, the Mascot missing link will be the biggest obstacle to a City-Airport route. It would also be the last missing link between the Cooks River/Botany Bay network and the inner city cycleways. It's important that Botany Bay Council gets it right.
It took quite a bit of searching to find that document above. The issue deserves more visibility, and Botany Bay Council deserve harsher scrutiny and pressure to comply with the standards they signed up for, and to provide a cycleway that people will want to use.