ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Howzat » Fri Nov 09, 2012 8:31 pm

The ACT Cycle Network, to be built over the next ten years, has four main planning options that the people in the Transport section are requesting comments about.

The link is here: http://www.transport.act.gov.au/studies_projects/ACT_Strategic_Cycle_Network_Plan.html

Survey link is at the bottom of the page. Let 'em know which plan you prefer!
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by BNA » Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:40 pm

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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Fri Nov 16, 2012 12:40 pm

Very confusing documents. What the heck is the difference between option 3 & 4 that almost doubles the price? The only thing I could pick was a bunch of little lettered boxes with no legend on the map to show what they mean.

I've downloaded the prelim report.... I'll read it when I have a chance.

And... isn't it hilarious that the inidvidual cost of option 1 and option 2 is about 80% of the cost of combining them? Sounds like the GDE all over again. Nothing like spending almost twice as much to do the job a second time.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Ross » Sun Nov 18, 2012 5:44 am

They might as well save their (our) money and not build any paths if they aren't going to maintain them. And they need to tell TAMS mowing contractors to sweep the paths after they finish mowing the grass on the side.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby bpmhigh » Sun Nov 18, 2012 10:35 am

I just wish that I shaved my legs before the photo - not to mention I've since switched clubs!

http://www.transport.act.gov.au/studies ... erview.pdf

...but yes, highly confusing.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Sun Nov 18, 2012 1:49 pm

bpmhigh wrote:I just wish that I shaved my legs before the photo - not to mention I've since switched clubs!

http://www.transport.act.gov.au/studies ... erview.pdf

...but yes, highly confusing.

At least you don't have the helmet on the back of your head!


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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby HAKS » Sun Nov 18, 2012 6:52 pm

bpmhigh wrote:I just wish that I shaved my legs before the photo - not to mention I've since switched clubs!

http://www.transport.act.gov.au/studies ... erview.pdf

...but yes, highly confusing.


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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Howzat » Mon Nov 19, 2012 7:29 am

Ross wrote:They might as well save their (our) money and not build any paths if they aren't going to maintain them.

Great minds, etc... - I put the need for sweeping & maintenance in my comment.

I also think the city should plan to build a comprehensive network from the get go - which one hopes is a lesson learned from the GDE experiment.

Cycling is getting more popular - there was an interesting article on the uptake of electric bikes in Sunday's Canberra Times. Between new bike technology, petrol prices, road building costs, public health benefits, parking shortages, and carbon pricing, all the factors make investment in cycling a smart transportation policy choice. And since we're about to drop $300 million on widening 11 kilometres of Majura Road - aka the Gungahlin to Costco Parkway - the comprehensive cycling network looks like a total bargain.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Ross » Mon Nov 19, 2012 8:48 am

Howzat wrote:

Cycling is getting more popular - there was an interesting article on the uptake of electric bikes in Sunday's Canberra Times.


Saw that article. I think there should of been some mention as to the rules and regualations regarding power output on these type of bikes so as people don't rush out and buy hotted up ones that can do 80km/h, though I guess all the ones available locally (as opposed to buying on the internet) would comply.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Mon Nov 19, 2012 11:22 am

Howzat wrote:I also think the city should plan to build a comprehensive network from the get go - which one hopes is a lesson learned from the GDE experiment.

The original "bike path" network was adequate for most cyclists, the on-road one is the glaring failure.

And as for the GDE... do you remember when Gunghalin Drive was single-lane, before they duplicated and then extended it?

You can see still see the legacy of the NCDC - clearways, basic earthworks and bridge sections etc. all in place ready for when the roads needed to be duplicated. Those guys knew how to plan ahead and get value for money, even if it takes 20 - 40 years to get the return on the investment.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Ross » Mon Nov 19, 2012 12:19 pm

twizzle wrote:You can see still see the legacy of the NCDC - clearways, basic earthworks and bridge sections etc. all in place ready for when the roads needed to be duplicated. Those guys knew how to plan ahead and get value for money, even if it takes 20 - 40 years to get the return on the investment.


Governments both Federal and Local only think of the present and not of the future. They only think about the quick easy (and cheap - example road resealing) way of doing things and don't worry about if things they do will be good for the future because they know they probably won't be in power in 3 or 4 years time and then it will be someone elses problem and expense to fix it up.

Tuggeranong Parkway is a good example of planning ahead. There were only a couple of suburbs in Tuggeranong once upon a time and yet they had a dual carrigeway multi-lane expressway type road running down to there for the future suburbs that were still 10 - 20 years away. Flip the coin to Gungahlin where they build most of the suburbs and then years after think "we might build Gungahlin Dr" now and then do a half-arsed job of it and only build one lane in each direction. Then 5 minutes later they decide to add another lane each way and fix up the Glenoch Interchange and end up spending twice or more as much as the original GDE cost.

The Govt is still talking about Majura Parkway, this has been talked about literally for more than 20 years and it is still not started yet.

The Govt is also talking about duplicating Gundaroo Dr and William Slim Dr; just talking though, probably be another 20 years before they get around to actually doing anything physical about it.

Kuringa Dr is another road that is badly in need of widening as well IMO. AFAIK there are no plans to do anything about that so looks like we are stuck with it the way it is for a long time to come.

/rant off
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Ross » Mon Nov 19, 2012 1:07 pm

Finally got around to having a look at these "plans", couldn't do it at home because my computer is too crap. Anyway, the plans seem very light on in actual route details. Lot's of squiggly lines drawn over a map of Canberra but no actual road names (if some of these paths are alined with roads) or how they are going to cross these anonymous roads? Are there going to be bridges, underpasses, pedestrian crossings, traffic lights or...???
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Howzat » Mon Nov 19, 2012 8:49 pm

There is quite a bit more info in the "Preliminary Options Report", posted recently on the page. It states a goal of trebling the number of cycle trips over the next 15 years. There is quite a bit of detail in what the four proposed options are, and which type of rider they benefit. The difference between Option 3 and Option 4 is (to my brief reading) one of completeness; 21 main improvement projects vs 37 in the complete plan.

In any case, please share your cycling insights and wisdom borne of experience with these kind folks, either in the survey or in an email.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Mon Nov 19, 2012 9:01 pm

Ross wrote: Flip the coin to Gungahlin where they build most of the suburbs and then years after think "we might build Gungahlin Dr" now and then do a half-arsed job of it and only build one lane in each direction. Then 5 minutes later they decide to add another lane each way and fix up the Glenoch Interchange and end up spending twice or more as much as the original GDE cost.

Ah, but you forget that before the GDE was Gunghalin Drive running from the Barton Highway to Gundaroo road... single lane the whole way, until they were forced to duplicate it. Thousands of houses in the new suburbs... three single-lane access roads, and even today it's not much better. We looked at a house in Amaroo, but at the time there were about two thousand houses and only the one access road.

And we lived in Palmerston from '96 to '99 - if you were ten minutes late in the morning, it was a 1km traffic line onto the Barton highway.

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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Ross » Tue Nov 20, 2012 12:15 pm

Howzat wrote:There is quite a bit more info in the "Preliminary Options Report", posted recently on the page. It states a goal of trebling the number of cycle trips over the next 15 years. There is quite a bit of detail in what the four proposed options are, and which type of rider they benefit. The difference between Option 3 and Option 4 is (to my brief reading) one of completeness; 21 main improvement projects vs 37 in the complete plan.

In any case, please share your cycling insights and wisdom borne of experience with these kind folks, either in the survey or in an email.


Ok thanks. Just had a bit of a look at that link. Option 4 seems the no brainer to me, more paths and benefits the most amount of riders. Greatest cost though, but that's not really my/our concern, the govt has more than enough accountants on staff I'm sure to identify how they are going to fund this.

I think one of the major issues which didn't really appear to get addressed in the report was the crossing of major roads. Underpasses or bridges need to be built. One (or two) is badly needed on Barry Dr near the Uni/CSIRO and maybe another further up toward Civic as well near Marcus Clarke St.

Almost seems like the govt has been overthinking this bike path plan thing. It's a bit like when people post on here questions like "which brand of insert bike part here should I get" you get 10 different people give 10 different answers, none of them "right" and none of them "wrong".
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Tue Nov 20, 2012 12:45 pm

Juts had a read as well. I'm shocked - some common sense being displayed!

But I think the goals are too ambitious unless they provide some kind of financial incentives to get people out of cars. Killing off the local shops and local schools has forced people to own cars for most of the region, and once a car is sitting in the driveway, it's a no-brainer to take a car instead of piblic transport... or cycling.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby mddawson » Thu Nov 22, 2012 9:40 pm

Any chance the ACT Government could encourage shopping mall owners to install secure bike parking cages? No point having a great bike path network if you end up having to park your pride and joy out in the weather in some isolated street rack whenever you go to the shops.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Fri Nov 23, 2012 9:52 am

mddawson wrote:Any chance the ACT Government could encourage shopping mall owners to install secure bike parking cages? No point having a great bike path network if you end up having to park your pride and joy out in the weather in some isolated street rack whenever you go to the shops.


New sign on Belconnen Mall - secure bike parking and shower facilities available for hire within the complex!
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby mddawson » Fri Nov 23, 2012 5:31 pm

twizzle wrote:New sign on Belconnen Mall - secure bike parking and shower facilities available for hire within the complex!


Excellent news. Hopefully others malls will follow their example.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby jcjordan » Fri Nov 23, 2012 6:13 pm

twizzle wrote:
mddawson wrote:Any chance the ACT Government could encourage shopping mall owners to install secure bike parking cages? No point having a great bike path network if you end up having to park your pride and joy out in the weather in some isolated street rack whenever you go to the shops.


New sign on Belconnen Mall - secure bike parking and shower facilities available for hire within the complex!

Centers likevthis are really popular in Melbourne.

They provide showers, lockers, towels and one that I saw had a mechanic on hand to do servicing
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby WoolleyMammoth » Sun Dec 02, 2012 6:21 pm

a bit pedantic but i'd still love to know what they mean by "existing networks" or "some of this network already exists". Cos across Canberra that seems to range from a designated 2-way well lit bike path off the road to a poorly-marked white line on the side of a highway.

My experience of these type of things is also that the people who are going to cycle from Belconnen to Woden 4 times a week (whether for recreation, commute, whatever) are going to do it anyway. Whereas people who would like to cycle from Scullin to Belconnen shops one a fortnight (and still get all the community/social/health/financial benefits) aren't ever likely to until there's decent infrastructure in place.

Which means anything short of Option 4 won't have the desired affect with the desired target group.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Howzat » Tue Dec 04, 2012 9:32 pm

Hopefully this would mean completing the parts where the well-marked on-road bike lanes suddenly peter out, such as going south over the Kings Avenue Bridge. There's an unused path on that bridge that is inaccessible for want of a curb or two and a few metres of path either side.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby supera » Sun Dec 23, 2012 10:37 pm

Howzat wrote:

Cycling is getting more popular - there was an interesting article on the uptake of electric bikes in Sunday's Canberra Times.


this was awesome, just for the 84 year old guy whose electric bike is going to keep him riding for another 10 years :D

Ross wrote: Flip the coin to Gungahlin where they build most of the suburbs and then years after think "we might build Gungahlin Dr" now and then do a half-arsed job of it and only build one lane in each direction. Then 5 minutes later they decide to add another lane each way and fix up the Glenoch Interchange and end up spending twice or more as much as the original GDE cost.


twizzle wrote:And... isn't it hilarious that the inidvidual cost of option 1 and option 2 is about 80% of the cost of combining them? Sounds like the GDE all over again. Nothing like spending almost twice as much to do the job a second time.


twizzle wrote:And we lived in Palmerston from '96 to '99 - if you were ten minutes late in the morning, it was a 1km traffic line onto the Barton highway.


I live in Palmerston now, and Gungahlin Drive is still a friggen disaster. I've only been in Canberra 5 years, so I've only recently learned the history of it (although i was here when the bridge fell down while they were building it). that they could build it, widen it within years - and for it still to be inadequate just defies belief in a city full of public servants (of which I can proudly say I'm not one - although i was when i first moved here...)

the "leaving time" has gotten noticeably earlier just in the 18 months that I've lived here. you used to be safe getting to the bridge/barton highway turn off if you left before 7.45. now the leaving time is 7.30 - or you run the risk of traffic backing up from Barton Highway, past Mitchell, past Franklin, and most of the way to Palmerston.

as i put in another thread, i'm brand new to cycling. after 2 weeks, i'm already confident that I could easily do the ride to work - but I'm still a little bit afraid to. I've seen so many cyclists lying on the side of the Barton Highway - I have no idea why this is a hotspot on essentially straight roads. but i've seen 2 "just hit" riders in about the last 3 weeks.

i'm also afraid of Northbourne Ave in the morning, cos the drivers are crazy - I drive that road every morning. they don't look before they turn to the left. i think the bus drivers are used to cyclists, so I'm sure they look - but they might see them, they may be in no danger of hitting them. but I've still seen some pretty confronting things with drivers still having no regard for riders.

so what I really want to say is that the critical elements of this plan needs to be:
a) i hope this plan includes cycling overpasses in critical crossing spots - Gungahlin Drive is the example that I'm thinking of. I haven't ridden down around southside yet, but I'd imagine the area around Woden town centre would benefit from this tremendously.
b) a bike path down the middle of Northbourne Avenue (that could start as far back as the Barton Highway). i don't know why this doesn't already exist! does this not make perfect sense for what is essentially a nature strip down the middle of a road that is a nightmare for riders?

i'll read the report over the Christmas, and might comment (that link doesn't seem to have a closing date for comment). from what I can understand after a quick look at those options, surely the GDE experience will lead us to option 3 or 4, and they'll build the 'primary' network first.

it has to happen. ACTION is a money pit - it will never turn a profit. People won't use it outside peak times cos services are irregular. but they can't be more regular because there isn't enough patronage. they're still using the frightfully old buses (that were phased out EVERYWHERE else last century) that are gross and dirty - but because they lose money, because people don't use them, they can't upgrade them.

on top of that, our road network is broken. Majura Road, GDE, Northbourne Avenue, Parkes Avenue, Commonwealth Avenue - all the roads that I can drive from home to work - are car parks at peak time.

it's a joke. you can't reinvent an entire bus fleet. you can't reinvent an entire road network. but for a minimal cost, you can give people an option that will be faster than driving or public transport, that's green-friendly and good for our health.

my question is why it's going to take 10-20 years. it should be a priority. i know (from the GDE extension experience) that things, even after commissioning, take ridiculous amounts of time in Canberra - but when you think about it, there's so much of what I would describe as a "tertiary" network already.

we don't have to rebuild these paths (eg dickson to ANU), we just have to fill in the gaps.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby twizzle » Mon Dec 24, 2012 7:26 pm

Riding on the roads is fine - you just need to assume that everyone is trying to kill you. In the case of action buses... a bit too close to the truth with some.

I prefer the on-roads, but that's because I cruise at 35+, and I hate stopping at lights/crossings etc. etc. But for a lot of riders, the off-road network is perfect.

For both options, wider or multiple lanes would improve the situation a lot.


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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby fatdudeonabike » Wed Jan 16, 2013 10:03 pm

You may all have seen the front of the Canberra Times today with the article about designs for the redesign of Bunda St as shared use to complete Civic's cycle loop.

Here are more details, including the full plans, fact sheets, and information on how to comment.

http://timetotalk.act.gov.au/community- ... ompetition

I wonder the extent to which the urban planners actually consult different users of the road - I find all of these plans bizarre. As the blurb says, Bunda Street needs specific consideration because of its congestion and the lack of room...

So why are all these plans so determined on retaining all existing parking? In fact, one of them is talking about an increase to parking spaces. Is this not counter productive?

I don't like the first one - it's stupid. A 10 km/hr zone is ridiculous, and its unworkable. There will be so much traffic here, moving at a snails pace... and how does a car/pedestrian shared zone even work? Do they think people will happily drive along there behind pedestrians? I think not.

I'd like to say that this might decrease the use of this road - but it wont, because the parking spots there are awesome. And how will parking on the Garema place side work if there's a two-lane bike path there?

The second one is the best of the options - reduce it to a one way street. I don't think the partial closure of Mort St is an example of why this is feasible, as they've tried to say - in fact, I think the partial closure of Mort St hurt. I also don't understand, when the idea is for it to become a high traffic cycle loop - why does the parking remain on the bike path side of the road? (I do like the bike hub idea, but I'm not sure where you'd put it.

I think the third one is probably worse than the first. It seems incredulous that anyone could be paid to come up with a solution thats essentially to raise the crossings to footpath level, to lay different color pavers, and to lower the speed limit.


The solution to this is so easy... you want to fix congestion? You want to make Bunda St a real part of the cycling network? You want it to be a safe place for pedestrians?

Remove the parking!

Reduce the speed limit to 40km/hr, build a cycle lane where parking spots currently are on the Garema place side - turn the main Canberra centre side into the cab rank and the required loading zones.

Unfortunately, I think it's probably safe for us to suspect that the brief required the retention of parking, because the ACT Government has so few revenue and self-owned parking options available.

Anyway, I'm just about to give feedback... hopefully the survey just lets me have my rant... I don't want to be there forever.
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Re: ACT Cycle Network Plan - comments requested

Postby Ross » Thu Jan 17, 2013 9:48 am

I don't really care as I never cycle on Bunda St and rarely drive there either but the seperarated cycleway seems the best option to me. Shared zones IMO are a nightmare for everybody involved - cyclists, pedestrians and motor vehicles. There is no order or rules to it, everybody is just doing their own thing oblivious to anybody else. At least with the separated cycleway you have the 3 different zones where people generally expect the 3 different lots of people to be; the pedestrians on the footpath, the cyclists on the cycleway and the vehicles on the street.

Childers St is a shared zone now and it is a nightmare to drive now as you you have pedestrians and cyclists wandering aimlessly from the footpath to the road and sometimes darting out from between parked cars onto the road. And from the pedestrian/cyclist POV not all of the vehicle drivers are on the lookout for pedestrians or cyclists and I reckon it's just a matter of time before a collision occurs (if there hasn't already been one).
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