Poor quality shoulders
Cycling South's latest newsletter highlights another of our campaign areas: the quality of the seal on the shoulder of rural highways.
On high speed roads carrying reasonably high levels of traffic such as the Lyell Hwy and Channel Hwy, wide sealed shoulders make the roadway safer and more efficient by providing space for cycling off the main carriageway. Unfortunately road maintenance projects are using large aggregate size for the spray seals (and this approach requires traffic to drive on it to compact it). This makes the shoulders unusable for cycling as they are full of loose, large gravel that will never be compressed as motor vehicles don't drive on the shoulders.
Our recent lobbying, together with alert and proactive local riders, has managed to have the aggregate size reduced from 14mm to 10mm on the Channel Hwy near the Margate Train. This will be an improvement on the previously completed section (yes!). Unfortunately it looks like the recommended procedure of having vehicles drive on the shoulder to bed in the gravel is not happening, and the gravel will not be swept. Sigh......
This recent (minor) success illustrates the importance of riders being vigilant and raising issues of concern.