This is the first update of the list of strategic path projects from the official Fast Track website. Of the “$25 million program” announced by Andrew Barr on 11/6/2020 very little has been allocated to new strategic path projects.
June is usually budget time in the ACT. The 2020-21 ACT Budget has been postponed. Canberra.bike looks at the last years budget and what the coming budget could hold. In general, the investment in active travel infrastructure in the ACT is not well documented.
The ACT Government has many Fast Track projects and of these, only a handful are of any benefit to the commuting cyclist. Hopefully – and we are really looking forward to it – we will see more to come. Here is what is currently on the list – mapped.
Andrew Barr announced last week (11/6/2020) a “$25 million program” including “$8 million being allocated to new (Fast Track) projects”. Canberra.bike thought it worthwhile listing here the strategic path projects from the official Fast Track website.
Addressed to the ACT Chief Minister Andrew Barr
The ACT Government has recognised the importance of investment in capital projects as part of the stimulus to offset the economic downturn caused by the COVID-19 health threat. In 2018 and 2019 the ACT Government released multiple policies to make Canberra a more liveable city, to combat the effects of climate change, and to prepare the city for a population of 500,000, who will need to commute to town centres and Civic across town twice daily. It is expected that our infrastructure will collapse under the peak period loads without the strategic investment in active travel and the construction of cycle highways. Even though it might still be the commonly held mental model, Canberra cannot still live by small city standards but rather mature into a regional metropolis.
It is all very well to want an improvement of the active travel infrastructure in Canberra but what precisely does “good” mean? The work of writing a precise definition has been done.
For urban infrastructure, these definitions are called standards. Australia is a federation and we have national standards but the states often have their own local standards which override the national standards. This is also true for the ACT’s active travel infrastructure. Austroads is the organisation responsible for national standards. It may have started with roads, but the standards have matured for all the ways people move around a city.
The Molonglo Valley to City Trunk Cycleway: Feasibility Study (ACT Government, 19 September 2014) was carried out by the ACT Government as a result of the 2012 Parliamentary Agreement between the ACT ALP and ACT Greens. The cycle highway is commonly referred to as the “C10 City – Molonglo” cycling route and is an official CBR Cycle Route (Figure 1 and 2). It is a cycle highway that is intended to provide a direct and high-quality cycling route between the Molonglo Valley and the City. In the Active Travel Framework, the technical language of the urban planners, it is called Principal Community Route.
Clear words for clear goals: making Active Travel meaningful
An email sent to Shane Rattenbury on 24/2/2020 (minor edits)
To achieve the ACT Climate Change Strategy 2019-25 goals, less people will be driving. The strategy does not deny anybody the right to drive.
If people are to leave their cars at home, then the Active Travel Network needs to be very attractive. COMMUTING is one of the primary reasons many people own a car. We cannot live without work and for the majority this involves a twice-daily commute. The 2017 ACT Household Travel Survey shows that the daily commute is one of the longest journeys made. Schools, shops, doctors and sport are usually in the local area and the distance travelled is almost always shorter. Not surprisingly, commuters are least likely to leave their car at home. Getting to work is serious.
Active travel has been on the cards for a while in the ACT. One of the earlier commitments to active travel was in the Parliamentary Agreement for the 8th Legislative Assembly for the Australian Capital Territory between the ACT Labor Party and ACT Greens.
Much has been achieved but much is still to be done due to the under investment cycling infrastructure in the nineties and noughties.
Below is an extract of this agreement relevant to active travel, including the commitment to the Molonglo Cycle Highway feasibility study. This new cycle highway is discussed further in another post. It is yet to be built.
The post Benefits of the C10 Coombs to Civic Cycle Highway is a case study of a number of alternate routes for commuting between Coombs and Civic. This post adds to this with visualisations of the routes as “fly-by” videos.