13 Jun, 2014

The case for shared space

The number one reason people give for not cycling is that they don’t feel safe. Separating bike riders from cars responds to this concern by making cycling safer and far more enjoyable so riders of all abilities and ages feel comfortable.

Installing safer infrastructure has been shown to lead to a substantial rise in the number of people riding bikes. In fact we know this to be the case already with the Frome Street Bikeway, with early user counts showing numbers are strongly on the rise.

This section is the city’s first continuous north-south fully separated low stress bikeway, connecting key destinations including universities, the East End shopping and entertainment precinct, the Park Lands, and suburban bikeways. It’s not a road to nowhere, but part of a plan and a connected system of bike routes set out under the city’s Smart Move Strategy.

While the Bikeway has seen the removal of a traffic lane in each direction between Carrington and Pirie Street, this stretch has the lowest traffic volumes of any north-south city route, and can operate with one lane in each direction. Hindley and Rundle streets, which are single traffic lanes each way, have similar traffic volumes.

It’s also important to remember the specific design for this section – kerb-side separated bike lanes – was identified through community and stakeholder engagement to be the preferred option.

More people cycling helps reduce congestion: one more person on a bike is one less car on the road, making it easier for those who do need to drive to get around.

We’ll know more about the Frome Street Bikeway’s use and overall interaction with all road users
in coming months when we carry out a full independent review, as endorsed recently by Council. In the meantime, consultation on the design of the Pirie Street to North Terrace section will start soon so sign up now to Your Say Adelaide to stay informed.