Bike lanes in Austins Ferry
Apr 2016. Linemarking is now complete on Main Road between Hilton Road and St Virgils. Fortunately Council opted for bike lanes rather than soaking up excess road space with a painted central median. The bike lanes are tight in places but with the low on-street parking demand bike riders can use the bike lane and the parking lane most of the time. The linemarking also makes crossing the road easier for pedestrians as motor vehicles now have defined travel lanes in the middle of the road away from the kerbs.
There is tweeking required to maximise the benefit of the bike lanes, in particular the section between Mason St and Austins Ferry Road which saw carparking bays prioritised over the bike lane which disappers through this section (see photo at bottom right). Cycling South made a submission to Council in March 2015 with the following comments: "The section between Mason St and Austins Ferry Rd is lacking bike lanes due to provision of parking lanes on both sides of the road. This section fails to improve conditions for vulnerable road users. The design has squeeze points which increase risk to people cycling and the disappearance of bicycle lanes forces riders to merge into the travel lane with faster moving motor vehicles. This impacts on the functionality of the road and the safety of road users."
Now that the linemarking is complete it is obvious that there is excessive number of on-street car-parking spots, particularly as there is an adjacent off-street car park. When the time comes to renew the linemarking Cycling South will be advocating for adjustments and improvements.
Feb 2016. Work has commenced installing pedestrian refuges and line marking on Main Road to improve safety and comfort of all road users between Abbotsfield Road and St Virgils College. The line marking defines space for driving and cycling and the dedicated travel lanes and bicycle lanes makes using the road more predictable, except the section between Mason St and Austins Ferry Rd where on-street car parking was favoured over a bike lane. Cycling South made a submission to Glenorchy City Council in March 2015 requesting the bike lanes be continuous and not disappear outside Roseneath Park where an off-road carpark is already provided. See background information below.
Sept 2015. At the Council meeting on 28 September 2015 the Council reconsidered bike lanes on Main Road between Abbotsfield Rd and St Virgils and voted in favour. Thank you to eveyone who contacted Aldermen prior to the meeting to encourage them to vote for the bike lanes. Opponents of the bike lanes spoke at the Council meeting but 5 aldermen still voted in favour and 2 voted against (3 aldermen were absent). The project is being funded by the Vulnerable Road Users Fund to improve conditions for cycling.
Aug 2015. At the Council meeting on 31 August 2015 the following recommendations were made:
a) Receives and notes the report regarding on-road bicycle lanes Main Road, Claremont to Austins Ferry
b) notes the on-road bicycle lanes on Main Road, between Abbotsfield Road and St Virgin's School will be implemented as designed and approved at the Glenorchy Planning Aughoristy meeting 10th August 2015.
c) Notes the project be fully funded through the Department of State Growth 'Safer Roads: Vulnerable Road Users' Program, including construction by an external contractor and project management by an engineering consultant.
Some aldermen cited concerns that the bike lanes would not be adequately safe and were worried about dooring and riders being hit by distracted drivers, or that they were not suitable for children.
Bike lanes improve overall road safety in a number of ways:
- define the travel lanes to make traffic more predictable (both motor vehicle and bicycle)
- reduce the crossing distance for pedestrians by keeping moving motor vehicles closer to the centre of the road and away from the kerbs. This also makes footpaths safer for people walking or children cycling.
- provide designated space for cycling so riders are not directly sharing road space with faster moving motor vehicles.
- help to reduce motor vehicle speeds by visually reducing the width of the roadway. Wider lanes = higher speeds.
- increased safety for drivers getting out of parked cars as motor vehicles travel a bike lane width away from their car door.
Main Road is an ideal candidate for bike lanes with low parking demand and mostly residential parking, existing high use by sports cyclists and adequate road width to install bike lanes without undertaking expensive kerb works.
Mar 2015. Community consultation closed on 26 March 2015 on proposed bicycle lanes between Hilton Rd, Austins Ferry and St Virgils School. The bike lanes (shown in green on the map) would be a mixture of kerbside or alongside parking (shown in pink). Bus stops are orange.
Cycling South made a submission with the following comments:
The section between Mason St and Austins Ferry Rd is lacking bike lanes due to provision of parking lanes on both sides of the road. This section fails to improve conditions for vulnerable road users. The design has squeeze points which increase risk to people cycling and the disappearance of bicycle lanes forces riders to merge into the travel lane with faster moving motor vehicles. This impacts on the functionality of the road and the safety of road users.
Providing for parking adjacent to the parkland (at the expense of kerbside bike lanes) seems excessive since there is an off-street car park that can service the adjacent playground and take-away food shops on the other side of the road. Two or three indented parking bays could be provided opposite the shop where the rose garden currently is to cater for customers while not compromising safety for people cycling on Main Road. Utilising the off-street car park by implementing on-road parking bans enables pedestrians to use the refuge for crossing the road, which also has safety benefits."
Mar 2017. Work has commenced to improve the Elwick Road crossing by increasing the width of the refuge and reducing the westbound traffic lanes from 3 to 2 at the crossing point. This reduces the crossing distance for cycleway users and provides a safety improvement at the crossing. Please take care when using the crossing during the works.
Work will commence in early March 2017 to remove a chicane gate at each road crossing on the Intercity Cycleway. This project was approved by Council in March 2016. The chicane gate project will make the crossings consistent with the treatment adopted by Hobart Council three years ago and more in line with the Austroads Guidelines.
The benefits of removing a chicane gate include better access for tandems, child trailers, tag-a-long bikes and recumbants which struggle to squeeze through without clipping a chicane gate. It is also good news for novice riders who find the chicanes destabilising and sometimes result in a fall. Riders exiting the road are less likely to encounter a bottleneck as there will no longer be a barrier at the entry to the cycleway and riders approaching the road can now focus on traffic rather than negotiating chicane gates.
One gate will remain at each crossing as a reminder to cycleway users that they are approaching a road, provide directional information as well as prevent illegal motor vehicle access. Additional linemarking will be installed at each intersection, along with Give Way signs. Once this additional work has been completed the chicane gate can be removed.
July 2014. Elwick Rd crossing improvements.
Glenorchy City Council has modified the left turn lane from KGV Ave to reduce speeds on the turn to give cycleway users more time for crossing the roadway. The awkward design of the intersection makes it difficult for cycleway users to judge gaps in the traffic when crossing the road, especially cars travelling along KGV Ave who could turn left onto Elwick Rd without slowing down. The modifications have tightened the turn and located vehicles slightly further away from the crossing which gives users a few extra seconds to cross the road. It is still a difficult crossing and unsuited for children or elderly. A signalised crossing is required to make the pathway usable for all ages and abilities.
June 2013. Bike lanes for Main Road. DIER has funded designs for on-road bike lanes from Beedhams Bay in Austins Ferry to Goulds Lagoon where the road becomes too narrow to accommodate bike lanes. Funding is required to install the bike lanes.
July 2011. New connection to MONA. Glenorchy Council has constructed a new crossing over the railway tracks just north of the Granada Tavern in Berriedale which provides a direct link to Berriedale Reserve and a better route for tourists visiting MONA by bike. It is an important connection which provides for touring cyclists accessing the campground, BMX riders going to the BMX track and offers a family-friendly destination with the playground and picnic facilities in the reserve. Tourists using MONA bikes or Art Bikes to visit MONA as well as Hobart residents will have an improved and safer connection from the Intercity Cycleway rather than using the Berriedale Rd exit to get to the museum.
Jun 2010. Cycleway extends to Cadburys. Glenorchy City Council has completed a 280m extenstion of the cycleway to Bilton Rd, Claremont. In addition 280m of concrete path has been constructed to Cadburys. The total cost of both projects is appoximately $400,000 with half the funding provided by the federal government, a quarter from the state government and a quarter from Glenorchy Council. The rail corridor reverts back to single track between Claremont and Granton which reduces the amount of space available for the extending the cycleway to Austins Ferry, which makes planning the next section more difficult.
Nov 2009. Glenorchy Council receives federal funding for extending cycleway. A successful application to the Federal Jobs Fund: National Bike Path Projects will see an extention of the Intercity Cycleway beyond Box Hill Rd to Bilton St, Claremont. This is a more technically difficult section to construct due to the reduction in width of the railway reserve. Council is currently preparing detailed design. Mayor Adriana Taylor says "it is terrific news to receive the $206.000 from the Federal Government which will allow Council to achieve our goals to extend the cycleway at a greater rate than would othewise have been possible".
July 2009. Intercity Cycleway to Cadburys project commences. Stage 2 of the link path to Cadbury will commence construction in July 2009. This will provide an attractive destination at the northern end of the cycleway.
April 09. Seating and shelters for cycleway. A successful application to the Federal Governments Community Infrastructure Fund will see $55,000 spent on constructing mountain bike and shared-use walking trails at the Glenorchy Mountain Bike Park in Wellington Park. An additional $49,100 has been provided to install seating, shelters and water fountains along the Intercity Cycleway from Station St in Moonah to Box Hill Rd in Claremont.
April 08. Cycleway crossing improvement at Lampton Ave. Glenorchy Council has made it easier and safer for cycleway users to cross the road at Lampton Ave. A refuge has been installed to enable people to cross in two stages. Previously it was difficult to judge traffic movements at Lampton due to cars turning from Main Rd and Howard Rd, which often resulted in cycleway users being caught out halfway across the road.
May 07. Claremont College Link from Cycleway. Glenorchy City Council, in partnership with Claremont Rotary, have constructed a new path which links the Intercity Cycleway to Claremont College, giving students a viable transport option to school.
July 06. Cycleway extends further north. In November 2005 Glenorchy Council received funding from the Federal Government's Roads to Recovery Program to extend the Intercity Cycleway from Berriedale Rd to Box Hill Rd in Claremont.
Nov 2011. Glenorchy Council received $2.32 million in funding from the Australian Government to extend the pathway to Wilkinsons Point. Work is expected to commence in 2012 and be completed by 2013. Council has completed the section of path between Intercity Cycleway at Driscoll Park in Rosetta to the foreshore at Montrose High School and will be working on the next stage in front of the Montrose yacht club (which will hopefully be complete by January 2012).
July 2013. Plans have been developed by GCC to realign the connection between the Intercity Cycleway and Barossa Creek Trail near the YMCA. Currently the trail goes through a carpark and the plans for the new alignment show a crossing of the railway closer to Peltro St and constructing a trail on GCC land at KGV just north of the YMCA carpark. Funding is required to construct the path.
Council supplies bike parking for staff
May 07. Glenorchy City Council has indicated its commitment to encouraging staff to use sustainable transport to work by installing a secure bicycle parking facility. The bike parking room is in a disused toilet block and includes hanging rails for the bikes. Staff have reported that they are very happy with the protected, undercover and secure bike parking room.