The submissions to the West Australian Bike Network Plan officially can be made to the Department of Transport by email by the 17th of June 2012. We have been made to believe that there is an inofficial grace period of about a week. We encourage all people riding bicycles to engage in this important planning process.
We have coordinated a public feedback session on the 5.5.12, hosted at the RAC premises, and the resulting comments are here: Submission from Public to DoT re WABN 2012
And we have sent our detailed own submission:
Below are some of the points raised:
The Minister’s foreword, the recommendations in the report and the aims clearly state that the WABN intends to increase cycling trips to schools, train stations and places of employment. The objectives, projects, governance and recommended actions in the report do not support this aim.
We support the aim of increasing cycling trips for transport purposes and re-aligning the Perth Bike Network (PBN) to schools, shops and train stations. However the recommended actions in the report are not linked to this aim, and together with the low funding allocation it is unlikely that the WABN will achieve its objectives by 2021. It is of concern that the WABN fails to link the stated aims with governance, objectives, projects, measures of success and benefits.
The tangible parts of the WABN are focused on the Principal Shard Path (PSP) system. The 9000 average daily trips counted on the PSP system show that it is used by less than 4500 people each day. Targeting short trips in the suburbs has a greater potential for participation growth, and will provide benefits to more people. Short distance trips are also less intimidating for new cyclists.
The funding allocated is insufficient to complete the PSP network, let alone fund the stated aims of the WABN.
Rather than having separate trial projects to increase trips to schools and train stations, a complete suburban solution should be trialled in three discreet geographical areas to get the synergy benefits. Possible areas could be found in Fremantle, Stirling and Bassendean.
Depending on the method used tripling the cycling participation by 2021 will yield between $40mil and $50mil per year in benefits. This should be the minimum yearly investment in commuter cycling in WA. A substantial portion of this investment should happen in the suburbs to increase the number of short trips to schools, train stations, shops and places of employment.
The draft West Australian Bike Network Plan 2012 – 2021 and the draft City of Perth Cycle Plan (CoPC) to 2029 are open for comment at the same time, yet the WABN does not seem to link to the CoPC.