Cycling in Sydney Australia
I bet CoS is kicking themselves a little on not having a Free City Cycle scheme up and running already- Would that scheme really be viable without safe separated infrastructure, plus many more wouldn't bother with the shared PPE too.
Having said that, it'll be good to reduce the hostility to pedestrians, rolling back the reduced pavement space due to giving drivers one more lane for 450m at College St would be a good start.
Riding in this morning, I was on Kent Street, waiting at the lights to cross Bathurst.
I looked back at my helmetcam footage and found that the cars on Bathurst street were given at least 125 seconds of green.
As I sat there, dozens and dozens of pedestrians accumulated on the footpath facing a red man for what seemed an eternity. Many of them gave up in frustration and bolted across on the red man.
Eventually, they got the green man. For about 10 lousy seconds. Cars got 125+
If they want the future to be walking, they need to treat people better than that.
I've said it before:
1) Make the cross city tunnel free and charge to use the surface roads in the CBD. This would probably be revenue positive and would deliver a massive result in reducing CBD congestion.
2) Make train travel free between city circle stations outside of peak times. This wouldn't mean a subtantial revenue hit, because the trains on the city circle have to do this loop as part of their larger route. From 9am until 4:30 these trains are largely empty between city circle stations. The goverment would save the cost of running huge numbers of buses on teh CBD surface roads, so pretty neutral on cost/revenue.
These seem blindingly obvious solutions.
The long crossing waits for pedestrians actually cause congestion, because its one of a number of measures that disadvantage walking vs driving. Historically I spent more than half my time on George St waiting rather than moving, which means that cars halved the speed of pedestrians in the CBD - given that vastly more traffic is pedestrian than cars, its actually a slower transport system on average - and obviously when you slow pedestrians, more of them drive.
Media release from yesterday indicates (someone associated with) Fed Govt can see past the BS of projects like WasteCONnex:
"Australia's cities are not sustainable, a major rethink is required
Australia’s first Minister for Cities and the Built Environment, the Hon Jamie Briggs MP, and Australia's Chief Scientist, Professor Ian Chubb AC FTSE, will launch Delivering Sustainable Mobility, an ACOLA report at the National Portrait Gallery in Canberra on Wednesday 7 October 2015…
"The report Delivering Sustainable Urban Mobility warns that Australia is heading down the wrong path and a new approach to urban transport is needed that prioritises people rather than one particular mode of transport."