Following Hobart City Council
Two BT reps attended the HCC's Infrastructure Services Council today, as several bike-related items were on the agenda.
First up was a consultant's review of options for upgrading the Hobart Bus Interchange. A range of alternative locations had been considered, and the best (or least worst) recommended location was to stay basically where the current bus interchange is. Southern Cycling had suggested that an important element of an integrated transport exchange is to cater for people riding their bikes to and from the bus i.e. extension of the bike network to reach the bus interchange, and provision of secure bike parking at the site. The committee (finally) accepted a recommendation that the timeliness of provision of bike parking be improved from the longer term to the medium term (i.e. will now be provided within 2-5 years).
Extension of the Hobart Principal Bike Network from Morrison St to IMAS and CSIRO around Castray Esplanade was approved, subject to formal agreement from several landholders that are involved. This will be a shared walk and cycleway, like the InterCity Cycleway and Morrison St.
There had been a proposal to reduce the impact of traffic in Hampden Rd, Battery Point. After consultation with the residents, the favoured options were either an expensive shared traffic zone (low speed e.g. 20kph, shared access by pedestrians, cyclists and drivers) or the "do nothing" option. Alderman Cocker suggested that the Kelly St area would be perfect for a shared access zone. Alderman Burnet suggested that a shared access zone could probably be achieved at a much lower cost, using less permanent engineering solutions, and the committee was very attracted by that idea. So another report has been sought.
The committee received a report on progress of construction of the Sandy Bay Rd cycle lanes. The report says the concrete road repairs, including road joint sealing, were carried out in December but it seems that some of this has been rescheduled to take place at the same time as the new lane markings, to enable more works to be carried out in the compressed timeframes before school goes back. Traffic islands have been temporarily moved prior to new lane markings.
Our impressions are that the lanes are looking pretty reasonable. There are some places where the lanes look too narrow, so we will be expecting Council to conduct a safety evaluation post-construction, and to remove some of the marked car parking spaces to give more room on the bikelane. The new pedestrian refuge traffic island near Derwentwater Ave is the type of thing we need to see more of - i.e. when people are thinking of traffic calming "bulbs", please leave room for the cyclists to get through!
Velo-City Global 2014 is an international bike infrastructure conference that is being hosted in Australia for the very first time this year. It will be held in May in Adelaide. It was great to see that the three Green Aldermen on Council will be attending the conference - a lot of valuable information will be brought back to Hobart.