Cycling in Sydney Australia
The quote above is the heading for a particularly dumb and irritating letter in today's North Shore Times.
Perhaps SCers would like to drop a short message to the NST editor -- email@example.com -- explaining the holes in Willoughby resident Gaye Hyslop's "reasoning":
"You would think that after all the time and effort that went into organising the bicycle lanes, riders would actually use them. I have seen numerous selfish ones ignoring them and riding on the road. Not to mention the ones I have had to avoid while exiting my driveway. Yes, the ones on the footpath. Get over it and use the space provided for you," she says.
My response would go along the following lines and be way too long for the editor to consider, but bear with me.
Starting with sentence #1. Let's look at all the time and effort that went into "organising" this Willoughby bike lane, not far from my home:
Because it's a signposted "bike lane", cyclists are required by law to use it, unless impractical. It is barely a metre wide, and runs downhill within millimetres of the doors of parked cars. Note the kerb extension at the speed hump about 50 metres away. The lane disappears here with a painted instruction to "MERGE". So you are mixing with any cars on the street anyway.
Further down the hill beyond an intersection the lane marking returns near a raised pedestrian crossing/refuge. Here the "bike lane" narrows to a mere 750mm and, just beyond the crossing, a car is parked across almost half the width of the "bike lane".
A little further down the hill the "bike lane" becomes a "garbage lane" (Well, no, actually. I think it has been a garbage lane from the start.), then the lane markings disappear again before a T-junction with no provision for cyclists. The "bike lane" is quite impractical for use by a cyclist and to use it at all you would end up swerving all over the road. Better to ride in a straight line in the "car lane".
So, is this the kind of space Ms Hyslop wants us to use? Are we being selfish by ignoring this sort of facility? Of course not, but I often wonder how expenditure on such things is justified in councils. The green "bike lanes" squeezed up against parked cars through the centre of Lane Cove are another "facility" which beggar belief.
Now, sentence #3: Avoiding cyclists while exiting her driveway! Has Ms H not noticed that there are many different kinds of wheeled vehicles using footpaths legally that she needs to avoid running over while exiting her property? Children under 12 on bicycles and the adults accompanying them on bicycles are just two of these types of legal footpath users.
Then, sentence #5: Use the space provided. Would that we could! Perhaps if cars weren't already taking up most of the space on the roads, usually parked or driving with only one occupant, and they weren't overlapping into space supposedly allocated to cyclists, then cyclists would be more able to use that space.
Sloane Street Summer Hill - must be a gateway to a parallel universe or something. Is it the only sign of this type in Sydney?
The first I have seen.
I truly dislike any traffic calming devices. I guess this may help but do most drivers prefer to race you to the sign than give way once you are at the kangaroo grass?
I had someone race me into a traffic calming device where the road was deliberately narrowed into a single very narrow lane. I had to swerve into the flower beds to avoid being run over. The driver then stopped 100 metres up the road and got out and asked if I had a f*(#@ problem with that. I wasn't even racing. I hate roundabouts and these types of traffic calming devices, they just promote conflict between bicycles and cars. Speed bumps are much better - I just bunny hop them or weave around them.
I wonder what 1000 of those signs would cost us, including clamps?
Better value than BNSW membership.
I have found drivers honouring that one, then again isn't there a street called Bogan St parallel, for them to use?
1000? I think you could use up to that number in the Canada Bay council area alone.
I'll pay for one only.
Hey we have how many SC members??
Oh and not a scrooge, I'm funding sumfing else which is not for interwebby.
PM if curious.
My morning count. Need 15 signs
Bogan St in Summer Hill, perhaps appropriately, is a dead end. :-)
Saw one today and it is local...
Parkview Road Manly.... on another traffic calmer just before Sydney Road so not much good as this T section is a all must stop zone unless you are a Chuck Norris.
I would like to point out that the topic of this thread is misleading.
It should be: "Many so-called cycling lanes are unfit for use. Rant!"