Cycling in Melbourne Australia
The latest audit from the Victorian Auditor-General's Office 'Developing Cycling as a Safe and Appealing Mode of Transport' states the bleeding obvious, refer quote below:
The ultimate goal of the 2009 Victorian Cycling Strategy was to ‘grow’ cycling into a major form of personal transport. The audit assessed the effectiveness of the Department of Transport and VicRoads in developing cycling as a safe and appealing mode of transport.
The strategy was a first, important step for Victoria to significantly raise the profile and role of cycling as part of a more sustainable transport system. The strategy created a logical framework for action and formed the basis for increased investment in cycling infrastructure. However, serious limitations in its development and implementation compromised its potential to achieve its goal.
The strategy was developed in haste without sufficient understanding of either current cycling journeys or what was required to ‘mainstream’ cycling as a form of transport. There was an overemphasis on physical infrastructure solutions, to the relative neglect of other measures essential to achieving the strategy’s goal, such as promoting cycling, educating potential cyclists and reducing the incentives to use cars.
In addition, agencies were not well prepared to implement the strategy or evaluate its success, and this contributed to the unsatisfactory progress in addressing its limitations. This lack of preparation repeats past audit findings about the department’s freight management strategy and metropolitan bus contracts.
Related news articles:
Herald Sun: Bid to boost cycling in Victoria fails
Well, no real surprise, right up there with the recent declaration of Melb as Australias' premiere cycling city, but lets admit there are a hell of a lot more cyclists around now than there were a few years ago - probably a lot 'driven' to it by poor public transport and road congestion. There needs to be more 'carrot' in the form of safety, education, and improved driver attitudes(and rider in some cases) and maybe pointing out the financial benefits as in the latest BV mag. As the numbers grow so will the pressure on the Govt. to get it right. Encourage everyone to ride!
It's been misquoted quite a bit... but on the whole, I do like what it has to say. Do it. But do it PROPERLY! (Coz that's not what happened).
The Department of Transport and VicRoads should:
1.complete implementation plans, when developing future cycling strategies, that describe objectives, time lines, resources and responsibilities and how a strategy will be managed, monitored and reported
2.improve the quality of project plans so that they consistently meet agencies' internal requirements by creating better practice templates
3.finalise evaluation frameworks, when developing future strategies, that describe outcomes, realistic targets, benchmark data and how success will be measured and reported for component projects and for the overall strategy
4.develop a sound basis for informing and implementing government policy through an improved understanding of current and potential cyclists, the journeys they make, the barriers to 'growing' cycling and how to best overcome these
5.apply the mechanisms required to effectively coordinate actions to 'grow' cycling and improve information sharing across the government agencies and non-government organisations involved in cycling
6.in consultation with other managers, review and update guidance on the construction, maintenance, auditing and retrofitting of shared bicycle paths and agree on the maintenance arrangements for the finalised Principal Bicycle Network.
I get the feeling the government might might use this report not to include cycling facilities as part of all new infrastructure projects, which Labor bragged about while still being in power. Even if cycling never accounts for more than the 1.6% or so of the total trips taken on a given day, nothing should be able to stop a cyclist from getting out on the majority of the roads to get to their destination.
If the car driver can't be educated to pass safely and respect my right to be on the road, I'll just go buy a tractor, it'll go at a similar speed as my bike, and hey, I even have the opportunity to get rego for it!