The West Australian elections are this Saturday. I do not want to make overall comments on the political parties. Instead I want to look solely at the comments and announcements the parties made in regards to cycling. There is a more detailed comparison on our website.
The Greens have put forward a comprehensive cycling policy with the aim of having 29% of all trips done by bicycle by 2029. Their BikeVision includes 300 km of Principal Share Paths, 5800 km of protected safe bike routes in the suburbs and 120 km of Greenways connecting parks and open spaces. The plan of the Greens is based on spending about $80mio per year, with the funds coming from a 3% slice of the transport budget plus a mix of Federal and Local Government sources.
The Liberals are using their incumbency to support the West Australian Bike Network Plan (WABN). In their announcement last Saturday they prioritised work towards Midland, at Grant Street on the Fremantle line, on the Mitchell Freeway (Glendalough to Balcatta) and widening the path along the Kwinana Freeway where possible. They have given verbal support for cycling as part of the solution to congestion. Their direct cycling funding includes the approx $25mio announced last year, and a further $30mio announced as part of the current election campaign.
Labor is giving “in principle” support for the WABN. Their Metronet vision includes priority access of bicycles to Metronet train stations, and acknowledges that “an investment in cycling is one important part of the solution to the traffic congestion crisis currently confronting Perth.” So far they have not detailed any direct funding for cycling infrastructure, and without funding the WABN is just a plan.
The Nationals have not made any comments in regards to cycling, and I have not seen any cycling policies or plans from them.
This year BikeWeek runs from the 17th of March to the 24th of March. A full list of activities is available on the Department of Transport website. The BTA will show cycling themed material on the big screen at Northbridge Piazza on Saturday 16th of March from 0700 to approx 1300.
BTA board members will go to most events as to find out from commuter cyclists their ideas on what’s needed for the Bike Network and other facilities. Every bit of information gathered is used in submissions to the government, councils, other authorities and Members of Parliament to get safer and better conditions for cyclists to ride to shops, work, school and other education places and recreation pastimes.
As usual, our AGM is held during BikeWeek, this time on Monday 18th of March at 1730 (for a 1800 start). The agenda is on our website. If you are a BTA member and unable to attend, please send me your proxy.