Cycling in Sydney Australia
To be fair to them, they probably have very limited resources. It's not so much "what are they doing for you?" as "what can you do for them to help other people such as yourself?"
Who does represent utility cyclists?
Nobody does a decent job of it here. We have the problem identified by Mikael Colville Andersen:
"The experience you have here in Australia compared to the rest of the world is you have a lot of avid cyclists doing the avid cyclist advocacy for cycling, which is wrong," the international consultant said.
"They like riding bikes, they are going to ride anyway, they are not the right people to speak for the 99 per cent."
I'm in Tempe too .We are in marrickville Council so write to our councillors & councils about the need for better provision for bicycle riders . We have our work cut out for us .Take for instance the recent Addison Road proposal to take away some on street parking to make it safer for pedestrians and bicycle riders alike ,a compaign was mounted ,facebooked and that was scuttled ,private entitlement =car parking trumped safety concerns .The same happened when the tempe traffic study was done .The outcome was close a street then reopen a street ,no separated bicycle lane etc etc etc.It's a miracle Carrington Street is ready to go almost. There has been an explosion of bicycle riding in the MLGA in the five years I have been riding .
Have even seen a sprinkling of kids riding to the high school which was unheard of 2 years ago.
In the 4 years I have been here the amount of cyclists has increased dramatically. When I first moved to Tempe it was rare to see anyone on my way home from work, even on the Cooks River Cycleway. I've noticed this trend everywhere on my commute.
We certainly have our work cut out for us. Myself and my wife have spoken at numerous council meetings, met with councillors, conducted petitions with concerns for some of the proposals as a result of the Tempe traffic study when Ikea went in. The usual council meeting would go something like this...3 residents speak against any change that takes away parking spots then I get up and mention safety and everyone looks at me like I'm speaking Russian.
The reason I am asking these questions is that it all seems disjointed. If a regular group was consistently questioning council it may be more successful.
new Bike Botany (much needed voice)
and the Marrickville Greens are all putting bicycles out there
Do they have a Traffic Committee? If you can join one and then get a few like minded people working together it can become a good way to get a council to really listen. I also would push hard on the ride to school stuff. It worked in manly and is kinda getting traction with warringah council as they have now spent some $$ on a bike plan but when it was finished they had just a few too many hostile councillors to keep pushing for the real hard stuff changes, it is now much better and safer to ride but not quite what it could or should have been in the early discussions.To me I found you can bang the desk a bit harder if you are a rate payer. Could be the same if you rent in the suburb.
It takes time plus lots of frustration but Manly has now got the bike thing and is a pretty safe place to ride and local women and men of all ages now ride to the surf, shops, to and from the ferry wharf or whatever. Before these people would just drive. And park. Without thinking. Or caring.
At last night's 'inauguration', if you will, of Bikes Botany Bay, this very issue was brought up. A local resident/cyclist is going to try and get onto Botany Bay's Traffic Committee.
This is the sort of thing that Ggp might want to get involved in as they're desperate for more people to be involved. Go to their FB page and contact them. Or BIKESydney who was the initiator of this meeting (attended, for your information by reps from Randwick Council, NSW Ports, Christina Keneally (its patron) and Bruce Notley-Smith (Liberal Member for Coogee and keen bicyclist) amongst many other reps from City of Sydney, Bicycle NSW, Transport for NSW, Bike East, ArtCycle, Bike Marrickville, Dulwich Hill Cycling Club, Randwick/Botany Bicycle Club etc.
This just shows you the force that can be created when someone with a few other local residents gets in contact with a Bike group.
I can give you info on who to contact, if you want or go to any of their FB / websites.
I think one of the problems with councils is that the only people that have the time to attend are usually old and semi retired. AKA they are the generation that brought the whole mess on us in the first place, and won't admit they have been wrong for the past 70 years of their life. OR they are filthy rich and just don't care about anything but status.
You can disagree with me if you want, but that is what I see in Blacktown council