Allow riding on footpaths

Equipment and On Road Behaviour, Laws and Rules. Cycling Promotion and Advocacy

Allow riding on footpaths

Postby diggler » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:39 pm

People are discouraged from cycling because they are afraid of the traffic. What if we allow cycling on the footpath on one side of the road and have pedestrians on the footpath other side of the road. This works on the Sydney Harbour Bridge, why can't it be extended? You could do this on roads which have been identified as having high vehicular traffic and low pedestrian traffic. You might also need median strips and traffic islands to help pedestrians cross the road.

This might encourage some people to get out of their cars and onto their bikes.
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by BNA » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:49 pm

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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby skull » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:49 pm

it's not an issue in Tassie. You can ride on the footpath unless otherwise sign posted.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby il padrone » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:55 pm

Significant safety risks on most roads, unless you're really just pootling and yielding at every cross-street. Going by a range of overseas experience of such systems.

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http://www.bikexprt.com/bikepol/facil/s ... dfc173.htm


Drivers don't look, driveways are always a hazard, then there's the problems of a confined path that will need to be two-way. Poor man's orange.
Last edited by il padrone on Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:00 pm, edited 1 time in total.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby zero » Wed Oct 12, 2011 9:57 pm

Nobody lives on the SHB, and very few people work there. ie possession of an otherwise unimportant/unusable side of the bridge is far more plausible than possession of half the footpaths in the state, most of which are outside houses and shops. Never mind that fail to give way whilst entering the roadway is a very big cause of cycling accidents.

I still have explained to more than one pedestrian who has managed to climb to the top of the SHB stairs that all those no pedestrian signs are in fact meaningful and the security guard will in fact send them back when they get half way.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby notwal » Wed Oct 12, 2011 10:10 pm

Queensland allows cycling on footpaths too. Pedestrians always have right of way. You have to use a bell.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby Mulger bill » Wed Oct 12, 2011 11:11 pm

My municipality experimented with it a while back, AFAIK it was never repealed. I ride the footpaths in some areas at some times but never on the commute or aboard the roadie. Takes it easy and has the scone on a swivel
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby Schmenz » Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:00 am

im not meant to on the footpaths on my commute - but i do. I dont feel like becoming road kill to those semi trainlers! :shock:
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby BigBadWOLF » Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:11 am

with the condition of many footpaths in sydney why would you want to ride on them..
there is a stretch along bourke st cycleway where there is no cycle way.. prefer the road as there is less bumps and hazards(Students) on the footpath.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby Schmenz » Thu Oct 13, 2011 7:46 am

BigBadWOLF wrote:with the condition of many footpaths in sydney why would you want to ride on them..
there is a stretch along bourke st cycleway where there is no cycle way.. prefer the road as there is less bumps and hazards(Students) on the footpath.


they are crap!

not to mention the plants overflowing onto the path (thank goodness for arm warmers for protecting my arm!) and then the parked cars so i have to dismount and scoot around :cry:

last night was the best tho. a motorcyclist blocking the whole cycle path and then choosing to ride along it. I had to get off and ride with the semi trailers for a bit :shock:
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby nescius » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:37 am

The ACT also allows riding on footpaths, as long as it is not within 10 metres of a shop that is open for business (or something like that).
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby Oxford » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:01 am

last thing we need is more rules/confusion and more visual pollution of signage showing which side of the road a ped' and a cyclist can use. what happens when a ped' needs to access somewhere on the "cycling side", do they chance crossing the road or do they walk up to the crossing and are then exempted to use the "other side" to get to their destination. what about businesses that are on the "cycling side" and now do not get passing ped' traffic? just sounds too much complication for something that shouldn't be hard.

if you can ride on the footpath in your respective state, do it safely and respectfully, really quite simple. if you cannot then demand from your state government that the roads be made safer through education of existing road users.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby steve-waters » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:08 am

footpath riding best way to ahve an accident - driveway, pedestrians wearing iPods you name it they scare me unless you are going really slowly and yeild to everything.

Too much random stuff can happen on a footpath
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby g-boaf » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:38 am

Allowing people on footpaths would be a good idea - provided riding is done at sensible speeds. Give people the option to ride on the footpath or the road.

And lastly, ban pedestrians from wearing music players/headphones when they are walking on footpaths. Good for people riding a bike, good for other pedestrians trying to get about quickly without being blocked by those oblivious to the world around them.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby notwal » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:43 am

steve-waters wrote:footpath riding best way to ahve an accident - driveway, pedestrians wearing iPods you name it they scare me unless you are going really slowly and yeild to everything.

Too much random stuff can happen on a footpath


Well yes it's certainly second rate but sometimes it's the best option. I kind of like mixing it up a bit with road, footpaths, bike paths.
It makes the ride interesting.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby elantra » Thu Oct 13, 2011 10:49 am

Oxford wrote:...................................................
if you can ride on the footpath in your respective state, do it safely and respectfully, really quite simple. if you cannot then demand from your state government that the roads be made safer through education of existing road users.

In this respect Queensland is more advanced than NSW.
I will sometimes ride on a footpath if i think it is safer or more convenient, but most of the time i stick to the road.
Riding on footpaths puts you at risk of "low-speed" accidents and obviously can be hazardous to pedestrians.
There is a time and place to ride on the footpath, and to make it illegal (as in NSW) is probably nonsense.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby wellington_street » Thu Oct 13, 2011 11:36 am

diggler wrote:People are discouraged from cycling because they are afraid of the traffic. What if we allow cycling on the footpath on one side of the road and have pedestrians on the footpath other side of the road. This works on the Sydney Harbour Bridge, why can't it be extended? You could do this on roads which have been identified as having high vehicular traffic and low pedestrian traffic. You might also need median strips and traffic islands to help pedestrians cross the road.


:lol: thanks, I needed a laugh this morning.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby lturner » Thu Oct 13, 2011 1:00 pm

Yes footpath riding is good in some situations. There isn't a problem with it in Queensland.

Whether it's safer or not depends on your speed I think. You'd be crazy to try and ride at 30km/h on the footpath, but for casual or young riders who might only be going 10-12km/h it's probably safer and more comfortable in certain instances.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby lethoso » Thu Oct 13, 2011 5:59 pm

lturner wrote:Yes footpath riding is good in some situations. There isn't a problem with it in Queensland.


Yah, seems to work fine up here. I take the odd footpath shortcut myself where it works out quicker.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby myforwik » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:45 pm

The QLD rule is awesome because combined with the smooth 45 degree gutters you can pretty much run every stop sign and red light all legally.

For example if you come up to a red light, you can just pull out onto the side walk then cross the side street. You haven't jumped the red light because you are not on the road with the red light, you are on the side street, and you haven't jaywalked the crossing because the crossing only applies to pedestrians! Not to mention all the left turns you can make on red lights etc just by jumping off the road then back on again.

The only dangerous thing about footpath riding is other cyclists. When crossing a road will on a footpath I have almost smashed into people coming from my left wanting to turn right and go contra flow on the foot path.

The other insane rule QLD has is that bikes are not allowed on pedestrian crossings. So you can ride on the foot path, but when it comes to the traffic lights you have to ride across the road beside the pedestrian crossing.... weird.

Furthermore I think footpath riding is a very good idea up steep hills where cyclists speed (<15km/hr) is so slow that its ridiculous to expect cars to have to wait behind you.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby David_G » Thu Oct 13, 2011 9:57 pm

I think you'll find the stop signs and lights apply to the boundaries of the carriageway, whic inludes the footpaths. Sorry to spoil you fun on that one.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby diggler » Thu Oct 13, 2011 11:11 pm

I guess the rule should be you can ride on any footpath at a limit of 10km/h. This is the limit on the shared Pyrmont Bridge in Sydney.

Has anyone ever been prosecuted for riding on a footpath?
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby human909 » Fri Oct 14, 2011 12:45 am

They do it in Japan and in Dawin without any problems.

In some ways it makes sense to make it legal. Most non cycling enthusiasts do it anyway and some enthusiast do to. I do it occasionally when appropriate, if I'm spinning up a hill at 12kph I'd prefer doing it on the footpath than on a 70kph road.


But too many idiots going too fast on narrow or busy footpaths will cause problems. Better to keep it illegal and just not generally enforce it. :wink:
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby toolonglegs » Fri Oct 14, 2011 12:50 am

il padrone wrote:Significant safety risks on most roads, unless you're really just pootling and yielding at every cross-street. Going by a range of overseas experience of such systems.

Image

http://www.bikexprt.com/bikepol/facil/s ... dfc173.htm


Drivers don't look, driveways are always a hazard, then there's the problems of a confined path that will need to be two-way. Poor man's orange.



Surely in most places the give way line is before the cycle lane..not after it!.No wonder there are so many accidents!.Poor planning.
I have 10kms of cycle lanes each way on my commute...velos always have right of way.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby David_G » Fri Oct 14, 2011 9:27 am

toolonglegs wrote:
il padrone wrote:Significant safety risks on most roads, unless you're really just pootling and yielding at every cross-street. Going by a range of overseas experience of such systems.

Image

http://www.bikexprt.com/bikepol/facil/s ... dfc173.htm


Drivers don't look, driveways are always a hazard, then there's the problems of a confined path that will need to be two-way. Poor man's orange.



Surely in most places the give way line is before the cycle lane..not after it!.No wonder there are so many accidents!.Poor planning.
I have 10kms of cycle lanes each way on my commute...velos always have right of way.



If you use the bike path on Wells Rd. that runs up towards Mordialloc, it's the same as in the diagram, plus you have to go over the pram crossing/spoon drain at every intersection.
I've ridden it once and never again, I'm back on the road, it's an 80k zone, so that has it's own issues, but less hassle than the constant crossings and having to give way.
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Re: Allow riding on footpaths

Postby wellington_street » Fri Oct 14, 2011 10:47 am

toolonglegs wrote:Surely in most places the give way line is before the cycle lane..not after it!.No wonder there are so many accidents!.Poor planning.
I have 10kms of cycle lanes each way on my commute...velos always have right of way.


That's a path, not a cycle lane. In this situation the cyclist must give way to all vehicles, the same as crossing any road.
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