At the turn of the millennium Canberra had no on-road cycle lanes, 19% of Canberrans cycled more than once a month. Most of them were children. We had Australia’s highest rate of child cycling.
By 2009 we had 5,000 less child cyclists, and the proportion of Canberrans who cycled more than once a month had fallen to 18%. Our rate of cycling among children under ten is now lower than in any State except NSW.
What child cyclists need most is a safe route from home to school. It is doubtful that the Civic Cycle Loop will provide any new connections between homes and schools.
Economic analysis has identified sixty projects that are more cost-effective than the Civic Cycle Loop. None of them will happen before 2017 if we fund the entire $6 million Civic Cycle Loop from our four year $5.5 million walking and cycling infrastructure budget.
If we postpone the $2 million Bunda St and Allara St sections of the Civic Cycle Loop, we can fund the following projects:
- — Inner South: Widen footpath on Wentworth Avenue; off road path from Deakin Offices to Adelaide Avenue.
— North Canberra: Off road paths along University avenue and Menindee Drive, and from the Lake to the War Memorial.
— Belconnen: Giralang Link off road path.
— Woden: Fisher off-road path; Mawson Shops off-road bypass; Athllon Drive off-road path missing link; Easty Street off road link; Aikman Drive on-road cycle lanes extension.
— Gungahlin: The Valley Avenue to Gundaroo Drive on road lanes