City of Port Philip, Melbourne: New bikes lanes ‘dangerous’ and a ‘sham’

A council has received extreme backlash over a new lane change that has been described as “dangerous”, “confusing” and a “sham”.

A Melbourne city council has received backlash over new pop-up bike lanes.

The new bike lanes, which in some instances take up entire roads in Port Melbourne, Elwood and St Kilda, have been described by residents as “confusing”, “dangerous” and an “absolute sham”.

“They give the impression that a vehicle can’t go down the road for there’s no lineage that divides the bike from the vehicle,” one resident said.

Under road laws, the only time a vehicle can be in a bike lane is when it’s painted green.

Residents took to social media to unleash their rage, with some users demanding the council rectify its “disastrous decision”.

“The new ‘lanes’ along Jacka Blvd and Marine Prd are confusing and dangerous. Does the opposite of making it safe for everyone,” one user wrote.

“Yarrawonga Victoria is a nightmare – vic roads seriously I don’t know what you were thinking, you need to rectify this disastrous decision” another said.

Local councillors in Port Phillip, which acts as the gateway to the city’s beaches located just 5km outside the CBD, are trying to put an end to what has been dubbed “the curse of the bike lanes spreading to the suburbs”.

Port Phillip councillor Alan Bond said he has received dozens of emails and calls from residents complaining about the new road visuals.

“I’ve had dozens of emails, calls and text messages from residents who have contacted me to complain about the over-engineering, the visual pollution, but most importantly the decrease in safety to pedestrians, cars and cyclists,” he said.

“Even cyclists are contacting me that these treatments are making it less safe for cycling in our city because they force cars and bikes to share the same roadway space.”

The Department of Transport in conjunction with the City of Port Phillip recently began rolling out “temporary pop-up bike lanes” from Elwood through to Port Melbourne and from St Kilda east through to St Kilda.

Mr Bond said what was meant to be a “light touch” program now included speed humps, bollards, concrete blocks and “hideous” yellow lines.

“I know myself as a councillor, I didn’t really know much about it and I know our residents certainly didn’t know much about what was proposed for these bike lanes.” he said.

Data from an integrated transport strategy proposed by the Cty of Port Phillip from 2018-2028 suggests that if current car ownership trends continue, over the next decade there will be a 24 per cent increase in the number of cars owned in the city.

It also highlighted how the city’s supply of on-street carparking spaces was barely enough to meet demand.

More than 82 per cent of Port Phillip workers commute from outside the municipality.

The data revealed that 45 per cent of Port Phillip residents commuted by car, while just 5 per cent travelled by bike.

Following these statistics, the city unleashed a plan to increase bike trip targets by more than 150 per cent by 2028, although these plans included separate bike lanes, not entire road lanes.

The proposal outlined bike riding as the most efficient, economical and healthy way for residents to travel and encouraged more people to ride more often.

Read related topics:Melbourne

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