Newcastle Bicycle Infrastructure fails

Cardiff

Has a well separated bike track on Main Road, it feels safe to ride along.

Until you get outside the main part of Cardiff, then …. you are on your own!

Bar Beach

Is easy to access by bike, has good places to park bikes even if they were not originally intended for that purpose, it would take a brazen thief to attempt to steal a bike in full view of everyone on the beach.

But on the corner of Parkway Avenue and Darby Street:

the holding rail seems to me to make things less safe rather than more so by being placed in the middle of the path on the traffic island rather than to the sides.

Charlestown Square

Is on a hill (which is not the fault of Charlestown), and once you get there, there are great bike racks to be seen, but they are all empty! The reason? There are no bike lanes leading to Charlestown Square.

Westfield Kotara

Has three wonderful bike tracks leading to it: Raspberry Gully, Fernleigh Track and one which follows the drain from Broadmeadow.

Raspberry Gully Track

Fernleigh Track

Broadmeadow bike track

These tracks are all off road, scenic and very safe. The Centre is at a nexus of the bike track network and is also in a flat area of town, which makes it an ideal destination for bike travel. It is also well known locally that there is a traffic congestion problem around the centre. Unfortunately, once you get within metres of the entrances, there is no safe way to get into the centre by bike, unless you ride with the cars around underground roundabouts and through the car park, which is often poorly lit and of course hazardous to bike riders.  There is also no signposted way to get from the road to the bike racks, this needs to be done via the zebra crossings. When I go there, I follow the pedestrian paths which are also inadequate for pedestrians or bikes. Unfortunately, the only way to enter the centre safely is by car. Solve several problems, Westfield Kotara, by improving your bicycle access, and then promoting it.

The Fail award must go to Westfield Kotara for being in such a great position and not using it to full advantage.

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This entry was posted in Bike Lanes, Bike tracks, Newcastle and tagged , , , . Bookmark the permalink.

2 Responses to Newcastle Bicycle Infrastructure fails

  1. petermc says:

    Some very good points here Vicki, Westfield Kotara in particular. On the occasions I have parked my car on the street to avoid the “round in circles fuel wasting” thing I also have found that it is very poorly designed for outside pedestrian access, let alone for cyclists, in contrast with the more open retail spaces just to its north.

    • Vicki says:

      I agree with you Peter, the shopping centre across the road is very cycle friendly, safe and scenic separated cycle ways and even designated laneways at trafic lights! As you approach Westfield, these lights and lanes disappear, I wonder why? That has given me an idea for another post: Bicycle infrastructure wins!

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