12 September 2008
Newcastle could become the number one Cycle City in the State with an increased level of funding for safe, segregated cycleways throughout the City, according to The Greens Newcastle Lord Mayoral candidate,
“Most of the topography of Newcastle is well-suited for cycling, and there's lots of opportunities for cycleways alongside stormwater channels and rail corridors that still exist throughout the city,” The Greens Newcastle Lord Mayoral and Ward 1 candidate, Cr Michael Osborne said.
“The popularity of cycleways such as the Fernleigh Track and the Throsby to Nobbys cycleway indicate the potential for cycling.
“If cycleways are connected and made safe more people would use them.
“Newcastle has to get beyond doing cycleways on the cheap by painting cycle symbols on the road between the traffic and the parked cars – these are not safe, and many people in the community describe these as 'car door death lanes' for cyclists.
“Council must make a commitment to making cycling safer and easier, so it is not just seen as transport for a small number of people, but an everyday part of getting to shops, schools and work for average families, as it is in many European cities.
“Council needs to work with the local Members of Parliament to secure joint funding, similar to that achieved for the Fernleigh Track cycleway.
“Cycling has a role to play as a response to climate change but also as a way of promoting a healthy lifestyle, combatting problems such as obesity,” said Cr Michael Osborne.
The Greens are committed to significantly increasing Newcastle Council's budget commitment to safe, separated cycleways throughout Newcastle, from less than 0.1% of the budget to at least 1%.
For further information or comment, contact Michael Osborne on 0439 442 984.