News — June–July 2001
Feature: Street Reclaiming
What would it take for our suburban streets to be friendly environments, where children can play and people can walk and cycle safely, and talk without having to shout? How could we get to this picture? Is this even possible? We tackle these questions on this issue. In Brief:
- We have lost the street, mostly to the car.
- The street is part of your home environment. Take ownership of what goes on there.
- Read the summary of Street Reclaiming, by David Engwicht.
Parramatta Council Update
Parramatta Council has set aside $420,832 for Railway Tce (Merrylands/Guildford) to supplement the Liverpool to Parramatta Cycleway. A further report is being prepared for works to be carried out under the balance of the Grant being the sum of $1,862,469 for the period 2002/2005. Well done to Councillor Chris Worthington (CAMWEST member) and Rod Cook (Parramatta Council) for their hard work in this area!
Kleins Rd's lane marking has been decided upon. Blisters will be put in, and pedestrian refuges with line markings curving around them. Council thought the road was not wide enough for cycle lanes, our preferred option, and it was concerned about legal issues for building an inadequate-width cycle lane. We have noticed this may also be happening on Clyde Rd at Granville.
Parramatta Council have done four reports on planning: CBD, parking plan and pedestrian mobility plan, development control plan, public domain plan. There was a clear lack of planning for cycling, particularly in the parking and mobility/access plans. Let's do better than that!
On other news, the bike plan review is in process and CAMWEST has had a voice. We have also been invited to attend the traffic committee meetings.
Bay to Mountains Ride Update
Bankstown council has once again made a $500 funding commitment to the ride - well done!. BUGOFH group have agreed to assist in organization. The ride is on Sunday 28th October, Active Australia Day. This ride was a huge success last year, and includes a free lunch. See ride details and photos. We need lots of volunteers to help organise and run this ride, please let us know if you'd like to be involved. Email: contact (AT) camwest.pps.com.au.
Rouse Hill BBQ Ride a Success
No car problems with this kind of escort...
Blacktown, Hawkesbury and Baulkham Hills residents enjoyed the very successful Rouse Hill BBQ Ride held last Sunday. Nearly 100 cyclists and their families converged on the newly completed Ironbark Ridge picnic area in the Rouse Hill Regional Park. The organisers congratulated the collaborative effort that forged partnerships between several organisations including, Councils, Police and the NSW National Parks & Wildlife Service (NPWS). CAMWEST (Cyclists' Action Movement WEST) organised the community ride and BBQ on behalf of the three local councils who supported the ride with funding and publicity. The NPWS generously made available their facilities at the park and the NSW Police of the Quakers Hill, Blacktown and Castle Hill Area Commands escorted the riders and supervised road crossings at danger points along the route. After such a successful day, the organisers are already working to make next year's ride even better. The strong level of community participation has ensured that the ride will continue to be an annual event that will encourage people to be active participants in a healthy and environmentally friendly community social activity. Although mainly on roadways the riders took advantage of councils' cycleways where possible. It was great to see residents and families out enjoying these public facilities. Of course the more people who become involved will only encourage the need to increase the provisions made to enjoy cycling in safety.
Bike Cops are Tops!
Did you see the bike cops on TV while the Anzac Day parade was going on? CAMWEST thinks these are an excellent idea. Using bikes for policing is a very cost-effective way of fighting crime and working together with the community. Bikes are quiet, fast, cheap, clean, and (most importantly) increase the profile of police in the community. See our feature article on bike cops, including an interview with a Parramatta bike cop. We also congratulate Constable Glen Campbell, from the Parramatta bike unit, for his involvement in a Heart Foundation pedometer test.
Pollie Pedal through Parramatta
A group of politicians rode into St Monica's school at North Parramatta on 1.5.01, the Parramatta Sun reported on 2/5/01. Included in the group was MP Ross Cameron, as well as Tony Abbot, Jackie Kelly, and Charlie Lyn. This was part of a centenary of federation event. The politicians joined the national links in the chain federation bike ride, which made its way to Canberra in May. Well done!
Cyclist Killed at Greystanes
On April 24, acyclist was killed in Brighton Road (near Esther St), Greystanes, reported the Parramatta Advertiser (2.5.01). Police were appealing for witnesses (1800 333 000). We need to improve safety in our streets.
Canal Cycleway Under Construction
The Parramatta Advertiser reported on 2.5.01 that "seven years after the Lower Prospect Canal was emptied work has finally begun on tis transformation into a pedestrian walkway and cycle track". Off road cycleways along green corridors such as creeks and canals are a great and should be encouraged.
Oil Supply Document Released
Danny Hannan, CAMWEST President, has released a document titled 'Why Are We Still Building Roads?' (RTF, 17Kb). It looks at the issues we face in oil supply in the future, from Australia's point of view. After thorough research (which he quotes), he concludes that an oil price shock, and later oil supply crunch, are coming, which will affect our economy, transport, and food production. The long term solution for this is energy conservation. So why are we still building roads? We should instead be building the infrastructure that will allow us to drastically reduce our need for oil, mainly rail and cycling.
Download Document (RTF, 17Kb)
Douglas Adams Dies
Douglas Adams is known to most people for his quirky Science Fiction book series, starting with The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy. What many don't know is that he was a vocal critic of giving cars too much priority at the expense of people. He unfortunately died recently, so the world has lost a great advocate (and writer!).
Adams' first book, 'The Hitchhikers Guide to the Galaxy', starts with Arthur lying in front of a bull dozer, stopping it from demolishing his house for a new bypass:
“'I'm afraid you're just going to have to accept it,' said Mr. Prosser, gripping his fur hat and rolling it round the top of his head; 'this bypass has got to be built and it's going to be built!'
“'First I've heard of it,' said Arthur, 'why's it got to be built?'
“Mr. Prosser shook his finger at him for a bit, then stopped and put it away again.
“'What do you mean, why's it got to be built?' he said. 'It's a bypass. You've got to build bypasses.'”
Here's another great quote from another of his books, The Restaurant at the End of the Universe:
“On Earth…when there had been an earth, before it was demolished to make way for a new hyperspace bypass…the problem had been with cars. The disadvantages involved in pulling lots of black sticky slime from out of the ground where it had been safely hidden out of harmäs way, turning it into tar to cover the land with, smoke to fill the air with and pouring the rest into the sea, all seemed to outweigh the advantages of being able to get quickly from one place to another…particularly when the place you arrived at had probably become, as a result of this, very similar to the place you had left i.e. covered with tar, full of smoke and short of fish.”
Blue Mountains RailTrail Gains Momentum
The Upper Blue Mountains RailTrail is gaining momentum.
The Blue Mountains gazette reported that a feasibility study
has been committed to. Martin Krause, who is advocating the
project, has also received a letter confirming Bob Debus'
(local member and NSW attorney general) submission to Carl
Scully (transport minister) regarding the Rail trail is being
looked at. Additionally, there has been some interest by some
cyclists in the Lower Blue Mountains advocating a cycle track
along the old Zig Zags near Glenbrook.
Blue Mountains RailTrail Proposal
CSIRO Precinct Plan
Holroyd council are proposing re-use of this site that backs onto the Boral site at Greystanes. It could all be a wonderful cycle link b/w Blacktown and Prospect reservoir and any new developments should provide through access for cycling.
Tizzana Ride Photos
Our Tizzana ride is one of our most popular. A social ride
along quiet and picturesque roads with many views over the
Hawkesbury River Valley, a few challenging hills, a
couple of ferry crossings and short stretches of good gravel
road to arrive at Tizzana Winery by 12:30 pm for a
catered and very social lunch. An easy 20 km ride back to
Windsor completes the day. Watch this space for the next
Calling Blacktown Advocates
We are looking for people in the Blacktown council area wanting to get involved in cycling issues. We are hoping a new group will be formed, focused on that area specifically. For details, contact Rob Kemp, 9864 8797, email@example.com.
We continue to be involved in cycling issues in the Hawkesbury area. $100,000 of funding has nearly all been accounted for. Two roundabouts have been amended to make it safer for cyclists at McGraths Hill. RTA have logistics problems fixing a path on the bridge over South Creek. RTA will repair path over boiler plate to stop slipping in wet conditions. Shared path to be built on Mulgrave Rd in Windsor. Cycleways will be able to access the two main bridges over Hawkesbury river at Nth Richmond and Windsor.
Metro Light Rail Welcomes Bikes
Congratulations to Metro Light Rail for allowing bikes in its trams for free. If a private company can do this, then why can't CityRail? See our 'Action Corner' below.
CBD light rail back on track (SMH, 23.5.01)
US Releases New Energy Policy
The US has released its long awaited National Energy Policy Report. The US president reckons America is facing the most serious energy shortage since the oil embargoes of the 1970s. It places little priority on conservation, hoping instead on producing more by going back to nuclear energy and trying to find oil in pristine Alaska.
USA National Energy Policy Page (White House)
Energy Policy Summary (White House)
Bush's energy plan (The Economist, 17.5.01)
power to the people, or you'll turn them off (SMH,
Covers the American energy policy. America has 4 per cent of the world's population using 25 per cent of the world's energy. There'll be as many as 1,900 new power plants in the next 20 years - almost two a week.
US dumps greenhouse treaty (SMH, 30.03.01)
America blows a fuse (Economist, 15.5.01)
Covers the worsening energy crisis in America: power shortages in California, soaring fuel and gas prices. Considers conservation as an alternative, albeit an unlikely one to be pursued.
Budget Cuts Greenhouse Funds
The budget "contains no new money for greenhouse initiatives, despite the urgency with which the world has been treating the problem", the SMH reported on 23.5.01. "The Government will take more than 10 per cent of the money from its $400 million Greenhouse Gas Abatement Program it negotiated with the Democrats in the GST deal and pass it on to the Australian Greenhouse Office for policy work".
Full article: Funding cut, but trust extended
In the Media Lately
Petrol prices hit $1.08 a litre (SMH, 26.4.01)
Is the Kyoto treaty dead? The Economist, Apr 7th 2001
days ahead as global warming hits home (SMH,
The CSIRO has dramatically increased its projections of the extent of global warming, suggesting average Australian temperatures could rise as much as six degrees by 2070.
Greenhouse pact too important to start over again (SMH, 20/4/01)
4WDs and a girl who didn't have a chance (Pedestrian Council)
out of five men at risk of heart disease (SMH,
More than 80 per cent of Australian adults have at least one preventable risk factor for cardiovascular disease, a snapshot of the nation's health shows. "The proportion of Australians doing sufficient physical activity has fallen and the proportion of Australians who are overweight and obese has risen sharply", the article quotes the report. Providing good bike facilities is a great way to encourage people to become active in their everyday routine.
The World Energy Council has a paper on sustainable energy for discussion at the Ninth Session of the UN Commission for Sustainable Development.
Energy Agency calls for 'Considerable Changes' to Attain
Sustainable Energy Growth
The world needs to adopt new policies and change old habits, if it is to pursue a sustainable energy path, Member countries of the International Energy Agency declared in a statement issued today. The three-page "Statement on Sustainable Development" (PDF, 16Kb) is the result of several months of study and discussion by the Agencyäs Secretariat and its 25 Member states. It addresses one of the key areas covered by the Organisation for Economic Co-operation and Development in its wide-ranging study of sustainable development in the new Millennium.
the Current Oil Market Report (IEA, 12 April 2001)
Global oil demand growth in 2001 has been cut by 85 kb/d to 1.33 mb/d. The expected fallout of the US economic slowdown on Asian economies should more than offset strong product demand for power generation in North America.
CAMWEST Needs You
We need more members to achieve better bike facilities in Western Sydney. Lately some members have become less involved because of personal circumstances. At the same time, there's a number of projects we'd like to get involved in. Join us and make a difference. This the international year of Volunteers is the perfect time!
1.Write/Email to Sydney's Metro Light Rail people for allowing bikes for free into their light trains:
I write to thank you for allowing bicycles for free in your light trains. This is a great service to your customers who may cycle from home/work to the light rail stations.
Another good idea would be to install bike parking facilities, such as rails and lockers (see http://www.bicyclensw.org.au/modules.php?name=Bike_Lockers).
CAMWEST's Action Corner is where we include one or two suggestions of something simple and concrete that you can do: write an email, letter, representation, turn up for a ride, etc. Join us in making a difference!
Rides Coming Up!
Bay to Mountains ride is happening on Sunday 28th October (Active Australia Day). Free lunch included!
The last Bay to Mountains ride was a great success - join us this year!
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