On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby grw » Fri Jul 23, 2010 5:16 pm

Noticed on my way home last night the new cycle lane which seems to go most of the way up the Sydney Road stretch from Brunswick through to Coburg. I rode in it, and felt a lot less safer than I did before it was there.

I noticed that cars don't come into the lane , but they come very close to it - I had the impression that it was treated by motorists as some sort of barrier that they wouldn't cross. this wouldn't be a bad thing if the lane wasn't so narrow but in places it feels like its less than a metre wide, and now the traffic can stretch across two lanes plus cycle lane.

As I stuck to the lane, i felt at times that I was riding in the gutter - whereas before the lane was there, I could take my own place a couple of metres out into the road and cars would go round me. I reckon the presence of the facility has made me feel less safe than I did before. I did end up ignoring it, but I think motorists will be getting particularly peeved by a cyclist riding outside of a freshly painted bicycle lane as they won't appreciate my reasons for doing so.

Just my observation. Anyone else familiar with that stretch?
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by BNA » Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:09 pm

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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby Missy24 » Fri Jul 23, 2010 7:09 pm

I ride Royal Pde and head right on Brunswick Road, the bike lane on Royal Pde is good.

Don't forget on Sydney Road you've got a lot fo trams and drivers are aware of it more than areas that don't, apart fromt he quality of the road its quick its fast and primarily safe, there have been a few stacks.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby grw » Fri Jul 23, 2010 8:09 pm

Missy24 wrote:I ride Royal Pde and head right on Brunswick Road, the bike lane on Royal Pde is good.

Agreed, royAL parade cycle lane is really good. I was thinking of the new one on Sydney Road, which is not an improvement, Cars come closer and you're not as easily able to control how close they will come without leaving the very narrow cycle lane.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby Missy24 » Fri Jul 23, 2010 8:14 pm

grw wrote:
Missy24 wrote:I ride Royal Pde and head right on Brunswick Road, the bike lane on Royal Pde is good.

Agreed, royAL parade cycle lane is really good. I was thinking of the new one on Sydney Road, which is not an improvement, Cars come closer and you're not as easily able to control how close they will come without leaving the very narrow cycle lane.

Sydney Road is without a doubt one of the most travelled roads in Melbourne, its a small road, there's trams running up to every 4 minutes at peak hour and the road itself isn't great, its littered with pot holes and lots of other stuff that isnt' cool.

Hard to improve a road like Sydney Road, although clearways in the morning/afternoon help.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby il padrone » Fri Jul 23, 2010 11:43 pm

grw wrote:As I stuck to the lane, i felt at times that I was riding in the gutter - whereas before the lane was there, I could take my own place a couple of metres out into the road and cars would go round me. I reckon the presence of the facility has made me feel less safe than I did before. I did end up ignoring it, but I think motorists will be getting particularly peeved by a cyclist riding outside of a freshly painted bicycle lane as they won't appreciate my reasons for doing so.

If the lane is unsafe you are fully entitled to ignore it ie. it is 'not practicable'. You're highly unlikley to get pinged by police. The motorist response is your main likely problem. Develop a thick skin and claim the lane-space you feel you need. The car drivers can organise themselves to go around you, most of the time you're probably going to be riding past them I'd have thought :?:
Riding bikes in traffic - what seems dangerous is usually safe; what seems safe is often more dangerous.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby aroes » Sat Jul 24, 2010 1:37 am

How new is this bike lane you speak of?

I do Sydney Rd quite often, as my gf lives in Coburg.........I'm guessing it's been added in the last day or so

Tuesday morning I had an epic stack on the way into town, just before Sydney Rd becomes Royal Pde. Was doing about 30 clicks, went to go round a parked car and got doored. Hit pretty hard and fell into the path of the traffic behind me. Within a split second I'd been hit by a car

Thankfully the guy that hit me had decent reflexes and had already slammed the anchors on. If he hadn't, I may not be typing this post. Pretty miraculous really, after spending the next few hours in Royal Melbourne, the full extent of damage turned out to be bruised ribs, a sore spleen and some grazes

I haven't ridden back up Sydney Rd since (I live in Dandenong). I find it to be quite safe during the day and at night, as the gutter is lined with countless parked cars. This allows me to use the remainder of the outside lane without fear of being doored on one side or sideswiped on the other. In the early morning though (which is when my stack occurred), Sydney Rd is a deathtrap. At this time of day there are practically NO cars parked along the gutter, which means motorists want to use BOTH lanes. I'm quite comfortable riding on the outside near the gutter, but big problems arise when you DO encounter the odd parked car, forcing you to go round. Because you've come from the outside and traffic is moving fast, 'riding big' isn't really an option and you're forced to 'hug' the parked car. This is what I did, the car's door was flung open and........you know the rest

Very keen to check out this new bike lane to see how it stacks up against the arrangement I've become used to. I'd be lying if I said I didn't feel nervous about my next trip along Sydney Rd
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby j-ho » Mon Jul 26, 2010 8:39 am

I noticed the bike lane last friday I think. I thought I had never seen it before, I usually ride up Lygon heading North and Sydney Rd only occasionally. But I did notice the lane and wondered if it had been there the whole time as I couldn't remember it. It's crap.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby Lincoln_blitz » Mon Jul 26, 2010 10:19 am

Noticed these lanes on Sat night (24th) and rode them this morning.

The lane is very thin about 90cm which includes the gutter. I would like to give it to the end of the week to pass judgment but its a bit bitter sweet thus far. It seems to keep cars out of my way when they are in bumper-to-bumper traffic. That said, I had a small truck this morning manourvering itselt so it was right up flush against the line... bit close for comfort. Whether that truck would of been driving in the gutter if the lane wasnt there is hard to say but time will tell.

Never really had a problem with cars passing me prior to the lanes being painted as imo there is plently of room, even when you throw trams in the mix - so Im not sure how they will help that much in that respect.

First impressions though, lanes are largely too narrow, the road condition in that area of the road is too poor to be of much use. Will be interesting in the rain. A couple of weeks back the first metre of road was under water for a fair way down Sydney road..... Worlds first wash-away bike lane :P
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby jules21 » Mon Jul 26, 2010 10:24 am

i use the shared path along the railway line, rather than ride down sydney road. if you need to come down royal parade, you can join back up along park st.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby aroes » Mon Jul 26, 2010 3:37 pm

grw wrote:Noticed on my way home last night the new cycle lane which seems to go most of the way up the Sydney Road stretch from Brunswick through to Coburg. I rode in it, and felt a lot less safer than I did before it was there.

I noticed that cars don't come into the lane , but they come very close to it - I had the impression that it was treated by motorists as some sort of barrier that they wouldn't cross. this wouldn't be a bad thing if the lane wasn't so narrow but in places it feels like its less than a metre wide, and now the traffic can stretch across two lanes plus cycle lane.

As I stuck to the lane, i felt at times that I was riding in the gutter - whereas before the lane was there, I could take my own place a couple of metres out into the road and cars would go round me. I reckon the presence of the facility has made me feel less safe than I did before. I did end up ignoring it, but I think motorists will be getting particularly peeved by a cyclist riding outside of a freshly painted bicycle lane as they won't appreciate my reasons for doing so.

Just my observation. Anyone else familiar with that stretch?
cheers
grw


seems i had my wires crossed

went up sydney rd again yesterday, it's the same as i remember it.............from the gist of your post i figured there must have been a new lane

i was wrong, as far as i know that lane you speak of has been there for years
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby grw » Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:18 pm

aroes wrote:i was wrong, as far as i know that lane you speak of has been there for years


Must have missed them everynight I've ridden up there over the last year then! (Although I only ride up Sydney Road on my way home from work, not down it towards town)
They're not shown on the Google street view of Sydney Road anyway.
http://maps.google.com.au/?ie=UTF8&ll=-37.774353,144.960906&spn=0.000717,0.002411&z=19&layer=c&cbll=-37.774352,144.960905&panoid=A26po3Eu5208_26cifXPbQ&cbp=11,207.7,,0,13.61


jules21 wrote:i use the shared path along the railway line

The Upfield Path - so many ninjas and peds stepping out at random on that route - I'd normally rather go on the road.

Lincoln_blitz wrote:Never really had a problem with cars passing me prior to the lanes being painted as imo there is plently of room, even when you throw trams in the mix - so Im not sure how they will help that much in that respect.

First impressions though, lanes are largely too narrow, the road condition in that area of the road is too poor to be of much use. Will be interesting in the rain. A couple of weeks back the first metre of road was under water for a fair way down Sydney road..... Worlds first wash-away bike lane


j-ho wrote:I noticed the bike lane last friday I think. I thought I had never seen it before, I usually ride up Lygon heading North and Sydney Rd only occasionally. But I did notice the lane and wondered if it had been there the whole time as I couldn't remember it. It's crap.


Agreed with both lincoln and j-ho, rough road, narrow lane, poor result.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby backofthebunch » Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:47 pm

any comments on the bike path up the middle of st georges rd? im moving to preston so i may use it from time to time. any safety issue?
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby Missy24 » Mon Jul 26, 2010 4:50 pm

backofthebunch wrote:any comments on the bike path up the middle of st georges rd? im moving to preston so i may use it from time to time. any safety issue?

I think the big intersection (don't know which one) there's been a few accidents over the years, check with www.bv.com.au/forums they will be in the know a bit more than here I think, I've used it first thing in the morning on weekends and never had a problem , but not on week days
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby j-ho » Tue Jul 27, 2010 12:01 pm

backofthebunch wrote:any comments on the bike path up the middle of st georges rd? im moving to preston so i may use it from time to time. any safety issue?

I used to ride it at all hours of the day and night into the city and back to Preston. I still do use it occasionally when I go for a ride. It's fine, never had a problem, and no one should if they have some common sense. BUT, I have heard of some people being 'attacked' along it late at night...
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby Lincoln_blitz » Wed Jul 28, 2010 11:59 am

Agree with grw. Ridden a few days now, and I reckon cars are getting closer to me with these lanes. Whereas before I found *most* cars giving me a fairly wide berthIt it seems as though *some* motorists use the lane border as some kind of territorial pissing contest, driving along its edge. The only positve of it is I find cars less likely to be parked across it when they are in traffic but this mitigated by the fact that if a car door opens you have nowhere to go with it being that narrow.

When Moreland surveyed people about bicycle infrastructure I responded to discourage them from putting these in. Oh well, it seems I was in the minority. 4 people wanted them :lol:

(Word document link)
http://www.moreland.vic.gov.au/mccwr/publications/brochures-factsheets-guidelines/moreland%20bike%20plan%20review%20-%20public%20~%20summary%20of%20comments%20about%20making%20roads%20and%20intersections%20more%20bicycle%20friendly.doc

Just another in the long list of projects that pollies and councillors hang their hats on to say they are doing something about cyclist safety and encouraging uptake without actually addressing any of the real, actual problems.

aroes wrote:i was wrong, as far as i know that lane you speak of has been there for years


Cant be these. I have ridden this stretch both ways every day for 3+ years. They definately appeared in the last week. I was crook late last week and on the train or else I would be able to tell you the actual day they went on.

jules21 wrote:i use the shared path along the railway line


I rode this for years before moving to Sydney road. The path is terrible - had heaps on close calls and a stack or two riding on it. FFS one night I had kids sitting on the path in pitch black with dark blue school uniforms, didnt see them till about 3 or 4mtrs aways! :roll: Lane discussion aside, if your confident in traffic imo your much safer on Sydney road. Horses for courses though.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby jules21 » Wed Jul 28, 2010 12:22 pm

Lincoln_blitz wrote:
jules21 wrote:i use the shared path along the railway line


I rode this for years before moving to Sydney road. The path is terrible - had heaps on close calls and a stack or two riding on it. FFS one night I had kids sitting on the path in pitch black with dark blue school uniforms, didnt see them till about 3 or 4mtrs aways! :roll:

high output headlamp + liberal use of bell at blind entry points = mostly smooth sailing for me.

my biggest problem is nuffie cyclists who turn into Safeway without looking.
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Re: On road cycle lane - Sydney Road, Melbourne

Postby aroes » Wed Aug 04, 2010 11:58 pm

Lincoln_blitz wrote:

aroes wrote:i was wrong, as far as i know that lane you speak of has been there for years


Cant be these. I have ridden this stretch both ways every day for 3+ years. They definately appeared in the last week. I was crook late last week and on the train or else I would be able to tell you the actual day they went on.



Yeah fair enough, I haven't been riding Sydney Rd anywhere near as long as you, I must not have paid enough attention before

I rode it again this morning for the first time since my stack. Started in Coburg city bound at approx. 6.30am. Was a very smooth ride (apart from the bumps). Lots of city bound traffic but not a single parked car to speak of, which made for a very safe and confident journey. From now on when I have to do this commute in the morning, I'll definitely be making the effort to leave half an hour earlier (in the past I've set off at about 7am). Massive difference and totally worth it
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