Cycling in Sydney Australia
There will be a two lap rally in Centennial Park at &am on Thursday to protest plans to implement speedhumps and a lower speed limit in Centennial Park for cyclists. Please like this facebook page.
UPDATE: There are now 400 people attending this rally.
Thursday 29 March, 7-7.30am
Centennial Parklands Café
Over 400 cyclists of all shapes and sizes have indicated their attendance via the Facebook page ‘Centennial Park Cyclists Rights Ride’ organised by Spot Anderson. Many more are expected to be present to show their support including concerned parents.
The ride proposes to take all present on a journey past the current location of the children’s learner cycleway and then on to the site proposed as an alternative, safer solution. That being behind the Charles Dickens statue in the middle of the park.
Spokesperson for Cycle Centennial Fergus Neilson will address those gathered, including parents, local politicians, members of Centennial Park Trust and of course cyclists about the desire for a safe, enjoyable park for all.
Details on the proposed traffic changes are available on the Centennial Parklands webpage. Feedback should be sent before 5.00 pm, Friday 30 March 2012 by:
As it happens, I work in the insurance industry. Ironically, this means I am legally prevented from advising or commenting on insurance matters.
Nonetheless, I think the proposal raises serious issues around liability. And fear of liability seems a powerful motivator for public authorities these days (certainly it's an excuse for a lot of stuff). If anyone else would like to take that up in a submission, PM me and I'll give you an outline of my thinking.
I'm absolutely disgusted by the cycling community's reaction to the proposal, which as far as I can see simply wants to put in a few speed humps and perhaps a couple of crossings.
These are traffic calming measures one would find on many urban streets so riders are used to dealing with them already.
Centennial Park is ideal for learners, kids, etc, etc. If a cyclist wants to ride faster than the posted speed limit in the park then they should go and find a road with a limit they are happy with.
I do find it ironic that Sydney roads are less than ideal for riders, but that same group of riders want to campaign to keep speeds high in a place that is meant to be safe for a wide variety of users.
Cyclists really only want to go fast in Centennial Park for an hour or so early in the morning - the rest of the time everybody is happy enough to stick to the 30km/h speed limit.
Surely some fast early-morning cycling can be accommodated without 24-hour physical barriers getting in the way? Centennial Park is the perfect location for fast early-morning bunches - let 'em go at it! The problem with the kids cycleway is the people in cars, not cyclists.
These high speeds that you talk about are still less than the lowest speed limit on the roads, being done by vehicles one tenth the weight of a motorised vehicle. Please keep this in perspective when expressing your disgust.
30km/hr is a perfectly fine and reasonable speed to approach a pedestrian crossing at on a straight road with huge visibility. its also perfectly reasonable to approach it at 45 on a cold morning with no kids and no cars present.
ie this is administrative madness, and punishing a road user class that doesn't present the most significant danger to pedestrians in the park.
Please understand that this issue should not be confused with changing speed limits in the park for groups of training cyclists. It's about stopping bad infrastructure that is unsafe, proposing solutions rather than the dealing with the symptoms, and maintaining the integrity of park's cycling circuit that has been enjoyed by all different groups of cyclists for over 100 years. As a parent, I know that children have a very different sense traffic awareness which exposes them to greater danger. See for example this child who pulled onto the track during a cycle race.
The proposal doesn't solve this danger, in fact, it actually increases it. The greatest danger in that area has been on weekends with parking, and people who double park on Grand Drive and sometimes in the cycle lane which lowers visability and creates confusion and conflict amongst park users. The simple solution is to locate the children's cycling ciricut to an area that doesn't pose such a conflict for the benefit of everyone.
"I'm absolutely disgusted by the cycling community's reaction to the proposal, which as far as I can see..."
Say no more. Have a read of the proposal, and have a good read of the reasons people are against it. There might be problems, but the solutions do little in the way of addressing them, all the while taking away a facility that is not only functionally crucial to the cycling scene in Sydney, but also holds a significant role in the heritage of cycling in this town.
Isn't the lower speed limit applicable to cars as well?
The section where they want to put speedhumps is only a problem on busy weekend afternoons, maybe a speedhump that can be popped up and down when necessary would be a good solution.