Bike riders welcome replacement Riverwalk announcement
Brisbane City Council’s announcement of the preferred option for replacing the former floating Riverwalk walkway has been welcomed by the Brisbane Central Business District Bicycle User Group (CBD BUG). The former Riverwalk provided a vital off-road corridor for the cyclists and pedestrians of the inner north east for which its replacement will once again fill. The importance of this corridor was proven before the destruction of the former walkway with it carrying around 3000 people a day.
The announced replacement is to be a segregated, fixed structure that will be above the king tide mark and should meet the following four key design features the CBD BUG outlined in a previous media release on this issue:
- Segregation of bike rides and pedestrians (safety factor)
- Designed for bicycle commuters (safety factor)
- Clear lines of sight (safety factor)
- Above the king tide mark (reliability factor)
Segregation will mean the replacement link will have a carrying capacity far exceeding the 3000 people a day who enjoyed using the former path: meaning the future growth in cyclist and pedestrian movements is well catered for.
The widely held misconception surrounding the former walkway is that its primary function was for recreation. The truth is the greatest community benefit was gained from the vast majority of people using were commuters. This resulted in thousands of potential daily car movements being taken off congested inner city streets. The announcement the replacement structure is to be segregated is a key component towards designing for bicycle commuter traffic.
CDB BUG spokesman Donald Campbell said the option selected should offer excellent lines of sight. Reducing the potential for conflict must be an element of all new paths and allowing clear lines of sight allows people to see oncoming users and avoid crashes.
As outlined in Lord Mayor Graham Quirk’s announcement the replacement structure is to be positioned above the king tide mark. This is a welcome change according to Mr Campbell, as key section of Brisbane’s bikeway network become submerged and unusable during king tides.
While the announcement is welcomed the fact the replacement will not be finished until 2014 is still highly disappointing for cyclists. According to Mr Campbell there are steps that have to be observed in relation to public infrastructure projects, but the reconstruction process should certainly be accelerated to more quickly provide people of the inner north-east with an off-road link to the CBD. Residents of the inner north east had begun to develop a cycling culture when provided with quality infrastructure, which will once again flourish when the replacement Riverwalk is constructed.
Media contact: Donald Campbell
0402 609 723
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