M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

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M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby thomashouseman » Mon Oct 28, 2013 11:42 am

Hi,

I notice in this document that there is very little in the way of information regarding cyclists / bicycle access / cyclist consultation etc

http://www.westconnex.com.au/documents/ ... ep2013.pdf

Some cyclist related quotes:
Issues raised during the community consultation pertinent to the M4 Widening include:

Need to consider alternative modes of transport, particularly public transport and
cyclists


Where pedestrian and cycle routes are disrupted along the M4 Motorway/
Parramatta Road corridor by construction activities these would be rehabilitated
and reinstated as soon as practicable. If necessary, routes would be relocated
to provide better future access.


A traffic and transport impact assessment would be undertaken as part of the
environmental impact assessment. This assessment would identify potential impacts
and nominate mitigation measures to minimise impacts. It would include:

An assessment of the impacts of the project on road users including motorists,
public transport, freight, pedestrians and cyclists; on local and regional road
networks.


Construction of the project has the potential for the following socio-economic related
impacts:

Impacts on road safety for vehicles, cyclists and pedestrians particularly at
proposed interchange upgrade locations.

Potential changes to access for pedestrians and cyclists near construction works,
including the cycleway near Haslams Creek, and for pedestrians using the
pedestrian overbridge at Silverwater


I'm a tad concerned they're going to do a M2 to us, banning cyclists all over the place for 5+ years.

Has anyone heard further info on it? Are related BUG's/Cycle clubs getting involved in the consultation process? (LACC comes to mind!)

T.
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by BNA » Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:37 pm

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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby Strawburger » Mon Oct 28, 2013 8:37 pm

Very early days for this project. The eis is being drawn up (very slowly) and stage 1 (m4 widening) won't start concept designs until early next year.

Basically the whole project is thick black lines on an aerial photo currently. Wait 6 months before details like bicycle facilities get mentioned.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby g-boaf » Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:04 am

How many cyclists really use the M4 breakdown lane (oops, ahem, cycleway)? If the amount is only very few, then they can probably get away with moving those cyclists onto the nearby back-streets and other roads.

The lack of interest in this versus similar discussion on the M2 closures makes me wonder if anyone really cares about loss of cyclist access to the M4? :idea:
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby thomashouseman » Tue Oct 29, 2013 7:15 am

It's not just that, they'll be closing the Gas pipeline M4 underpass at Olympic Park and I'm assuming the whole under-M4 cyclepath when they build the new raised motorway next to it.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby find_bruce » Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:25 am

Yep, I think thomashouseman has highlighted the issue - the reason few people use the breakdown lane is that the shared path underneath is much more pleasant, even if the vista & amenities are not a patch on the M7.

Of course where cycling comes in the scheme of things is demonstrated by its absence from the core objectives on page 9.

As I understand it, the cyclepath is used by a reasonable number of commuters, but can't give you the numbers as there is no cycle count. The issue will be that, like the M2, will be the difficulty in finding a suitable alternate route
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby g-boaf » Tue Oct 29, 2013 8:32 am

I wonder if many of the commuters who use the under M4 path know that it will likely be closed?

As I understand it, some cycling groups (Bike Sydney and Bike East) did suggest a very vague idea of a Western Sydney "trunk" cycleway going from Blacktown into the City. This would have been a good alternative and would remove the need for the M4 one totally.

Perhaps it's time to push that.

I do agree with Find_bruce, the under-motorway path is better than the dirty break down lane.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby rogan » Wed Oct 30, 2013 12:28 pm

Is the north side of the river, crossing at Silverwater and continuing along the river to the Olympic precinct or beyond, a viable alternative?
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby QuangVuong » Wed Oct 30, 2013 9:29 pm

If the under-M4 path is closed, then the Parra river path isnt too bad of an alternative to connect Parra and Olympic Park. It's a little bit longer and does reach Rhodes, but there are no road crossings. However, its a bit of a hassle to make the way from the Parra river path to the M4 path that runs from Church St/Woodville Rd all the way west towards the M7.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby g-boaf » Wed Oct 30, 2013 9:52 pm

QuangVuong wrote:If the under-M4 path is closed, then the Parra river path isnt too bad of an alternative to connect Parra and Olympic Park. It's a little bit longer and does reach Rhodes, but there are no road crossings. However, its a bit of a hassle to make the way from the Parra river path to the M4 path that runs from Church St/Woodville Rd all the way west towards the M7.


All the way west? It only gets to Cumberland Highway before turning into the breakdown lane, right?
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby thomashouseman » Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:16 am

Yeah till Cumberland Highway.
I live in Toongabbie and the Parra River route from SOP is okay, but it does add about 3km to my trip and I've yet to find a fast way through/around Parramatta going that way. I've tried Parra park >> Westmead T-way bridge but the no. of traffic lights and intersections at Westmead is a lot worse than the M4 path. Also, which way do people use to get to Parramatta park? Do you carry your bike over the pipeline bridge or go South St and behind UWS? Where do you go then? I've tended to work my way to Victoria Rd and to the Parra Leagues Club and enter Parra Park from there, but there must be a shorter way?

Anyway, back on-topic, after re-riding the path yesterday there IS a LOT of room under the M4 but realistically I can't see them NOT closing that path during construction of another multilaned overpass. They'll also have to buy a lot of houses to demolish.

T.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby QuangVuong » Thu Oct 31, 2013 6:31 am

https://www.strava.com/activities/91311637

Go through the whole Parra River path, and down Thomas St. Rather than chuck a left at the end of the street as the signs tell you to, turn right onto Victoria. Head all the way down and through the stadium.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby find_bruce » Thu Oct 31, 2013 7:02 am

Cyclists are not the only ones being kept in the dark

SMH wrote:Mayors in the dark over plans for WestConnex

Mayor of Leichhardt Darcy Byrne said he met bureaucrats working on the WestConnex project last week, but was not provided with any detail beyond glossy brochures.

''Without a cost benefit analysis or even any traffic modelling having been provided to the public, it is extraordinary that the government has approved an $11 billion project,'' Cr Byrne said.

''Worse still, the only component of WestConnex the government is interested in talking to councils about is the compulsory acquisition of properties along the Parramatta Road corridor.''

Mayor of Ashfield Lucille McKenna said residents and councils needed to know a lot of information about the WestConnex, including how many cars would use the motorway, how it would affect local roads, and how entry and exit points for the motorway's tunnel would be built.

But it had been impossible to pass on details to residents concerned about these issues.

''We can't answer any questions - we are really, really in a dilemma,'' she said.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby g-boaf » Thu Oct 31, 2013 9:50 am

thomashouseman wrote:Yeah till Cumberland Highway.
I live in Toongabbie and the Parra River route from SOP is okay, but it does add about 3km to my trip and I've yet to find a fast way through/around Parramatta going that way. I've tried Parra park >> Westmead T-way bridge but the no. of traffic lights and intersections at Westmead is a lot worse than the M4 path. Also, which way do people use to get to Parramatta park? Do you carry your bike over the pipeline bridge or go South St and behind UWS? Where do you go then? I've tended to work my way to Victoria Rd and to the Parra Leagues Club and enter Parra Park from there, but there must be a shorter way?

Anyway, back on-topic, after re-riding the path yesterday there IS a LOT of room under the M4 but realistically I can't see them NOT closing that path during construction of another multilaned overpass. They'll also have to buy a lot of houses to demolish.

T.


Buying houses to demolish could be a good thing too - that might allow them the liberty to replace the current path and build one that overpasses the existing road-crossings. That would be a real win. And then finish it off by linking it with the M7 at the other end. You have some gold quality infrastructure there and then.

Xplora had a route for just the thing you wanted. Let me dig it out later.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby Strawburger » Thu Oct 31, 2013 10:54 am

The reason why everyone is in the dark is because of what I said in an earlier post. The project is just lines on a page.

Usually the rms have done a concept design and have all the stakeholders involved. As this one is so big, the government has announced it without much actually being done (do you remember an election recently that may have needed announcements like this ;) ). It is a different process than most other roads.

If you look at the program, the eis is being prepared at the moment (very slowly mind you), you will then see construction companies assemble teams to bid on stage 1 concept design (the widening from church street to home bush bay drive) then a winner announced to proceed to detailed design. That is when you will start to see details of the project come through.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby tubby74 » Sat Nov 02, 2013 3:12 pm

Just attended one of the community sessions and details are very vague ball thru could say was it was highly likely the bike route would be disrupted witg the works compounds but they were talking to cycling groups about detours. No pkans on extending the path but there is a decent unallocated poil of funds for other improvements.
They are looking for ideas about how to use the wasted space under the elevated section adjacent to the current bike route and thought a suggestion of a pump track and skills section worth considering
There is one very keen cyclist working on the consultation side so we are not being ignored.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby thomashouseman » Sat Nov 02, 2013 3:36 pm

Good to hear, thanks.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby zero » Sun Nov 03, 2013 5:34 pm

What they should do is

build grade sep crossings of all the cross roads. Link up all the bits of sharepath that fail absymally at the moment of providing a route, and lead to me getting lost when "trying" to use it, because the next bit is never clear where it is, and eliminate any need to cross motorway ramps at grade, because that is provably unsafe as a design methodology and routing the cyclists down the ramps just makes the route fail to perform as a commuting route.

Where they are building new bridges, they should supply the bridges with a sharepath component, (which won't add much cost).

The path should link cleanly to the path leading on from Woodville road, and it should link cleanly to a street at Concord on the other side of Concord road.
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Re: M4 - WestConnex Upgrade

Postby g-boaf » Thu Nov 28, 2013 2:19 pm

Here is the latest news - about 100 houses will go:

http://www.smh.com.au/nsw/westconnex-10 ... 2ybyc.html

Zero's comment above is absolutely right. They should make the cycleway portion (if there will be one) like the M7 cycleway. And preferably finish it out to the M7 too so that they both link up. That would make it far more useful than the current filthy glass and debris filled breakdown lane and certainly better than the current very slow and poor route. Some parts of it now are just the narrow and uneven pedestrian footpath.

But since there are no plans for extending the current path (as said above) we can close the book on any ideas like that.
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