Cycle Group Raises Safety Concerns on M2 Detour Cycle Route
Sydney, Australia – 20 January 2011 – Bicycle NSW is calling into question the safety of the M2 detour cycle route which provides people riding bikes an alternative route during the construction of the $550 million M2 Upgrade project.
Despite a recent statement released by Transurban that maintains the project team has worked closely with Bicycle NSW and other local cycling groups to determine the route, the alternative cycle route has not been endorsed as either safe or suitable by Bicycle NSW, Bike North and CAMWEST.
Omar Khalifa, CEO of Bicycle NSW says, in this instance Transurban and RTA has seriously overlooked the needs of people riding bicycles on the M2.
“The alternative M2 cycle route is a real safety concern as in many places it forces people riding bikes to leave the cycle lane and merge into traffic driving up to 80 km/h. The detour route is also poorly designed which means people riding bikes need to dismount at several traffic lights and crossings. In some cases, the travelling time for people previously riding on the M2 itself has nearly doubled!” says Khalifa.
The alternative M2 cycle route was officially opened this week despite a lengthy consultation process with Transurban and RTA. Bicycle NSW, BikeNorth and CAMWEST made numerous recommendations which have been excluded from the design, including profiled line markings to present an audible and visual warning for drivers who may drift off the roadway. Transurban also declined requests for bicycle cages near the bus stops along the M2 for people who want to ride to the bus stop but leave their bikes in secure parking.
“It’s disappointing to see the RTA and Transurban simply ignore our recommendations for safer, more efficient cycling routes. This clearly indicates the larger issue we have at hand about the government and private sector consultation processes,” said Khalifa.
Bicycle NSW, Bike North and CAMWEST are also calling into question the meagre $1 million budget spent on the alternative cycling route.
“Compared to the overall budget of $550 million spent on widening the M2 Motorway, it’s disappointing to see such a minimal amount spent to offer a clearly inadequate alternative cycling route. More funding is clearly needed in order to provide better cycling infrastructure and improved safety conditions for people who cycle on the M2 either for fun, fitness or as a means to get to work,” said Khalifa.