And before I begin, this is a discussion about bicycle lanes, not a car vs bike thread. To preempt any argument, good bicycle infrastructure benefits everybody, including car drivers.
You may have noticed some unusual bike lanes popping up around Canberra. Unusual, because they run for just few metres near intersections. They do not run the length of the block, and do not provide a continuous and dedicated bicycle lane. They are uniformly provided only where the road is so wide that cyclists don’t really need a painted bike lane. They are a cheap and nasty attempt at satisfying some sort of bike lane obligation or to justify some bike lane statistics.
Here is one in Campbell:
And one in Aranda:
My question is, are these really bike lanes? Is car parking prohibited along these, even in the middle of the block where the lane is not marked? Or even where it is marked:
The pic below is what a bike lane should look like (pics from when I lived in Vancouver, BC). Note the clear signage, the continuous lane, clear of debris, the No Parking signs:
And also from Vancouver, a bike lane going around a corner, protected from cars taking the corner too sharply:
This new style of Canberra bike lane does not comply with Australian standards, is confusing, both unnecessary (as it is only on wide roads) and inadequate (not continuous, not signposted or enforced and don’t provide safe routes when cyclist really need it, i.e. on narrow roads).
If you are interested is seeing how a real first world country makes cycle routes through a busy city, read my photo-essay about Vancouver’s bike system.