A revised Armidale Cycling Strategy is on public display. A link will be provided as soon as it is available. Please email comments to email@example.com or fill in form: your ideas/hazards so that other people can see and discuss them.
The strategy is far from complete. Here are some issues that could be improved
Armidale's BikePlan should include a formal discussion of safety and reported injuries to cyclists over the last 10 years (or perhaps longer) For example, a published analysis of injury statistics showed a 7-fold increase in injuries to cyclists at roundabouts in Armidale, compared with the previous intersection treatment. Despite the increased risk of injury as yet the strategy has does not yet discuss safety, nor whether the new treatment at Markham/Dumaresq could be improved to make it more cycle-friendly as well as safer for cyclists.
Copy of the Plan with some suggested improvements using track changes (NB - large file, as is the original Council document)
Armidale's BikePlan should include a formal discussion of whether pathways between no-through roads (cul de sacs) could be used to create low-traffied routes Council plans to sell the land where two possible routes could be created - from Donnelly to Fiona Place and Alexander St to Golgotha. Should a small portion of land be reserved to ensure connectivity for cyclists? It the first case, it would substantially shorten the time it takes to walk or cycle to Girraween, making it more convenient and practical to cycle, as well as providing an alternative walking route to UNE. In the second case, people living at the end of Alexader St would have to walk all the way back to Niagara St, instead of having a pleasant low-traffic route via Golgotha then McIntosh and Bain Crescents to the cycleway and UNE.
Nowadays, few people think twice before jumping in the car to drive 1 km. But with the advent of peak oil, and increased awareness of the health and environmental benefits of cycling, the loss of such walking and cycling routes may be regretted.
Armidale's BikePlan should consider consult cyclsts before installing structures that may affect them
For example the painted lines and red reflectors below were installed on Erskine Street near the Erskine/Niagara roundabout in October 2011 to stop cars parking in the area. Until they were installed, with few cars parking there except at school pick-up and drop-off times, cyclists turning left from Niagara into Erskine were able to ride about a foot from the kerb well out of the path of motor vehicles.
Unfortunately, the new structure discourages cyclists to ride in this safe area, adding to the difficulties and dangers of cycling.
If cars want to park in the area, a few red reflectors are hardly likely to deter them - the main impact will be on cyclists. Surely the while strips and a cycle logo would have been equally effective at discouraging parking without creating difficulties and dangers for cyclists?