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February, 2018

The first example of the new design for city bikeways can now be used.  It is on Frome Street, between Pirie and Grenfell streets.  It is generally two metres wide, with no or low adjacent kerbing, so should provide enough room for overtaking.  This photo shows the eastern side, where the loading for the Mantra Hotel has resulted in a section that is narrower and won't allow overtaking.  See below for an update on the bikeways.

In this month’s issue

What we've  been up to

Bikeway update

State election: BISA's position 

State election: party policies 

Free-style Cyclists event

2017 cyclist crash statistics

Finally, there are links to some recent discussions on the Adelaidecyclists forum and our Facebook page.

What we've been up to

In the two months since the December Pedal Update we've been taking a summer break.  However it wasn't all lazing about.  
  • Chair Fay Patterson and committee member Ian Radbone met with Road Safety Minister Chris Picton and the new Director of Road Safety, Gabby O’Neill.  Our briefing notes have been put on our website.
  • Chair Fay Patterson was quoted in Adelaidenow article South Road overpass bikeway set to reopen. (Thankfully, it has now reopened!)
  • We have put together and sent a position paper to the political parties calling on them to commit to significant increases in cycling expenditure. (See below.  Thanks to Katie Gilfillan.)
  • We’ve sent a letter to DPTI about the impact of audio tactile line-marking on cyclists. (Thanks to Paul May.)
  • Committee Member Ian Radbone was interviewed on ABC Radio Adelaide about shared paths in the Linear Park, 21 February.
  • Vice-Chair Katie Gilfillan was interviewed by The Advertiser about our call for more cycling expenditure, 22 February.
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City bikeways: an update

The State government has extended the due date for the completion of the Frome and east-west bikeways by six months.  Under the original funding agreement both were to be completed by June 2018.  But with the Adelaide City not yet even consulting on the east-west bikeway, clearly that timeline wasn’t going to be adhered to.

This is the state of play as at mid February.

Frome Bikeway (reporting from Carrington Street to the River Torrens)

Carrington to Angas Street has been upgraded and re-opened, with the same width as previously. 
This is a part of the re-built Frome Bikeway between Carrington and Angas Streets.  We are sympathetic with Adelaide City Council's desire to minimize signs, but we may change our tune if motorists don't learn where to park...
Angas to Pirie Street is due to be narrowed to two metres, to allow two lanes of peak hour traffic in each direction.  However, work on this is yet to start.  Council is awaiting reaction to 2 metre wide bike lanes in the section north of Pirie Street.

Pirie to Grenfell Street has been narrowed to 2 metres, with a narrower section in front of the Mantra Hotel to allow unloading of guest from buses.  At the time of writing work was nearly complete.

Grenfell Street to North Terrace: this will be the next section to be constructed, though this will not start until after traffic has settled following the introduction of trams on North Terrace and the conclusion of the festival period. 

North Terrace to the River Torrens: this is due to be completed this year. However, it is understood that, given construction of the new high school on the eastern side, an interim treatment on the western side only is envisaged, featuring flexible posts as barriers.  The existing marked bike path on the eastern side will remain for the time being.  While the wait is disappointing, one consolation is that Adelaide will experience quick, cheap and (hopefully) effective bike lane separation.  Perhaps it will encourage similar in other locations.

East-West Bikeway

Flinders and Franklin streets have been chosen for this, though there may be some moves in Council to rescind this decision.  The assessment used some very conceptual ideas, which provoked two complaints, including a petition with eight signatures from Flinders Project.  (This restaurant claims on its Facebook Page to support the Bikeway.  Go figure.)  This storm of protest was enough to convince Adelaide City Council to halt all planning on the Bikeway until “ratepayers” on the corridor could be asked whether they want the bikeway at all. 

Who was to be actually asked and what they were to be asked was meant to go to Council in February, but Council has delayed this pending informal feedback from businesses about the work done on Frome Street.

Meanwhile, BISA is organising a petition of its own...

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State election: BISA's position

BISA has sent a position paper to The Greens, SA Best and the Labor and Liberal parties.   

The paper is on our website and is structured under the following five points:

1.         Invest $75 million each year for 4 years to fund priority cycle infrastructure
2.         Complete BISA’s Top 10 infrastructure priorities by 2022 (with councils)
3.         Directly fund the Metropolitan LGA’s Cycling Strategy, and direct $10 million                per year to local bicycle infrastructure
4.         Commit a yearly budget to improve the safety of cyclists on DPTI roads
5.         Establish a DPTI ‘program’ devoted to active transport. FUND it and                            REPORT on it!
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State election: survey of the parties

The Greens have always been the most supportive of cycling, with leader Mark Parnell a long-term member of BISA.  Mark has used his position in parliament to put pressure on the government to consider issues facing cyclists seriously.  The Greens are the only party with a policy devoted to cycling, saying they would spend $90m over the next four years on new cycling measures. 

Mark has emailed a response to our position paper, stating that “… the Greens are delighted to support all of the initiatives set out in your letter…The Greens believe that these are modest proposals that will help redress years of neglect of cycling and cycling infrastructure.”

The Greens’ role is limited to the Legislative Council, not the House of Assembly, which determines the government. But whichever party or parties form government after the elections, it is undeniable that a strong Green representation in the Legislative Council would benefit cycling.
Recreational cycling will be boosted if a Liberal government implements its promises.  It would allow cycling in several reservoir areas that are currently no-go areas.  Along with a Victorian Liberal Government, it will build the Great Southern Bike Trail linking Adelaide and Melbourne.  Perhaps the most significant feature would allow cyclist to ride across the barrages at the mouth of the Murray.

And although they haven’t gone this far, the policy of diverting interstate trains around the Adelaide Hills, to enter Adelaide from the north, suggests the enticing prospect of the existing railway line through the hills being available as a rail trail.

But for general cycling, there’s not much on offer.

Their Healthy Communities Program has a goal of increasing physical activity by individuals and communities, which hopefully would encourage cycling.

The Liberals also say they will allow cyclists to turn left on red at “suitable locations” – along with all other traffic. 

During the controversy over allowing cycling on footpaths, the Liberals said that if elected they would impose a 10km/h speed limit on cyclists using shared use paths.  This would be disastrous for cycling if enforced on all shared use paths.  We note that when he addressed a BISA gathering Transport spokesperson David Pisoni suggested that he was open to modification of this policy.  Also, we like the Liberals’ idea of allowing people injured in a collision with a cyclist to have access to the motorists’ compulsory third party scheme to cover costs of injuries.
Labor has a very skimpy “plan for South Australia”, with the headings Jobs, Energy, Education and Health.  Certainly no mention of cycling and so far there has been no mention of cycling in any promises. In any case, after 16 years of Labor governments, the record is probably a better guide of what to expect than any promises. 

Perhaps the best feature of this record was the brave decision to implement the Citizens’ Jury recommendations to legislate (if not enforce) minimum passing distances and to allow adult cycling on footpaths.

SA spends less per capita on cycling and than any other state.  The few major projects to benefit cyclists have often been part of a major road project that has created more traffic and a more intimidating road environment.  Recent transport projects (North Terrace tramway,
O-bahn extension) have either not delivered what was promised for cyclists or have ignored cyclists all together. 

To be fair to Labor, we probably would have had more cycling infrastructure by now if respective local councils had got their act together: the Frome and East-West bikeways, and the Beulah Road bikeway.  But it’s interesting to note that the State government is spending more on “upgrading” the South Road/ Richmond Road intersection than it is on city bikeways.
SA Best has nothing to say about cycling, though we have been approached by the Unley candidate Anthony Olivier regarding what should be done for cycling in that electorate. 

We note that John Darley, who led the campaign in parliament to disallow cycling on footpaths, was elected as a Nick Xenophon candidate, though he is now an Independent.  
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Free-style Cyclists event*

*  The Bicycle Institute doesn’t have a view on whether helmets should be compulsory for cycling on road, but does believe that the same rule that applies to seat belts should apply to helmets: they should be optional for people riding off public roads, such as on shared use paths. 

Having said that, those with a more liberal approach might be interested in an event as part of the campaign to change compulsory helmet regulation.
On Saturday 17th March, Freestyle Cyclists will be holding a helmet optional protest ride as part of their 'Stop Fining Healthy Transport' campaign.  As with previous years, the route will start in the city, and follow the Torrens Linear Park to the coast, and then to Grange, where it will be possible to make the return journey by train.  The event will proceed with a police escort, making it a rolling road closure (and the non-wearing of helmets won’t be fined), but this only applies to the outward journey.

Freestyle Cyclists is a national cycling advocacy group that campaigns for what could be best described as European style utility cycling - safe streets, infrastructure and helmet law reform.

So if you would like to see Australia's helmet law repealed or reformed, once you've cast your vote on the 17th, come for a ride along the Torrens and feel the wind in your hair again.  The ride is planned to start at 2:30pm from Parliament, but see or follow Freestyle Cyclists of South Australia on Facebook for confirmation nearer the date.
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Bike crash statistics, 2017

The following stats of crashes involving cyclists during 2017 are thanks to the Adelaide and Prospect BUGs’ February newsletter:
  • 721 crashes involving 752 cyclists resulting in 648 casualties
  • 2 fatalities
  • 40 serious injuries
  • 602 minor injuries
  • 83% were male
  • 92% were in metropolitan Adelaide
  • 2.3% were not wearing helmets
  • 9.7% were right angle crashes
47% of crashes occurred on 60 km/h roads. 44% of crashes occurred on 50 km/h roads.
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Here are some of the discussions on the Adelaidecyclists website.  Use it to contribute to the discussion - or to start a discussion of your own.

Frome Street update (comments by users on the new sections)

Cyclist seriously injured 26-Jan-2018 (cycling in the Adelaide Hills)

"Beg button" frustrations at cycle crossings

Prospect Road hazard

Kadina to Wallaroo (new rail trail, including discussion of bollards)

From our Facebook page 

Here are a few of our posts from the last month.  Click on the photos to go to the item.
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Pedal Update is a newsletter of the Bicycle Institute of South Australia Inc., published monthly.  The Bicycle Institute is incorporated in South Australia.  Material published in Pedal Update is copyright unless otherwise stated.  Articles and graphics may be copied and republished by non-profit organisations, provided the author and Pedal Update are given credit.  When by lines are used, opinions published in Pedal Update are not necessarily those of the Bicycle Institute.
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