CAMWEST: Cyclists’ Action Movement West

From Abbot Road to Wentworthville

Introduction

I was interested in the responses that a question from a new cyclist from members of our group, and decided to reproduced them here, particularly the photos, since they are quite big, and I cannot send them to many people by email. The question arrived on 19 March 2007. The responses arrived on 20 March.

Letter to CAMWEST

Hi, I am new to bicycle riding having just purchased a new Bike late last year. I was anticipating using the proposed cycle path along the new Parramatta-Rouse Hill busway but have been astounded to find that a cycleway has not been included with this T-way between Abbott Road and the Cumberland Hwy including the bridge over Toongabbie Ck and the two overpasses at Abbott RD and the Cumberland Hwy. I understand CAMwest puts in a lot of voluntary effort to get better outcomes for cyclists and I would just like to ask if CAMwest was aware that this was not going to happen. I wrote to the RTA but no reply. I attempted to ride along the alternate paths along Old Windsor Rd but found it a daunting task especially crossing some of those very large intersections like the M2 exit/entry. Very unsafe if you have children.

This seems to be a tragic lost opportunity to link the M7 cycleway with Parramatta in a safe cycling environment. Is all hope lost to make safe cycling a reality?

First answer

Bikely route with comments From Abbot Rd intersection to Briens Rd Northmead, then to Westmead

Second Response

Hi All,

I have had a quick look at [the] bikely map,

there is a new cycle bridge over the creek between the Cumberland Hwy and Briens Rd, so it's not necessary to detour quite so far in this spot. However I don't know yet how to get down the hill from Ferndale Close to Cumberland Hwy, I assume there is some path still to be completed here, or perhaps cyclists are expected to go through the back streets via Ferndale, Doig St and through the little park there.

Anyway, this is preferable to the big detour roud Hammers Rd, and that hammers Rd bridge is really dangerous as well, sorry Michael, I've been nearly hit by a car there twice.

Unfortunately the route from Abbot Rd to Cumberland Hwy is covered by something that the T-Way people think is a bicycle route. It's all they are building and it has some serious problems. They don't seem to understand that a double traffic lights crossing like the one peter refers to at the intersection of Abbot Rd and Old Windsor Rd is completely unattractive to any sort of cyclist. How much more would it have cost to clip an extra couple of metres of light traffic width onto the bus overpass.

They spent about a million dollars on the bus overpass to cross Abbott Rd and cyclists get a set of traffic lioghts with a bicycle lantern so we can ride across after waiting 5 minutes for the lights to change.

My solution:

What is neeed here is for the traffic light computer to be re-programmed so that when a cyclist crosses one set of lights the cycle changes to turn the next set instantly green so the cyclist can clear the entire intersection in one go! And pigs might fly too!

Mark R

Third response

Hi all,

Here is a link to the route via Ferndale and Doig

There are several reasons for not recomending the route (see comments on the route in its notes) I have attached some photos taken last Sunday (18/3)

The Noise Wall was completely closed, and has been hacked open, and a section of the fence erected has be taken down by locals. The closure was done to kurb the incidence of theft from cars stopping at the lights on Hart Drive by some residents from the housing commision, hiding behind the part of the Noise Wall. Could be impassable in wet weather.

It may not be a safe route after dark.

Notes about the park

  1. No formed path — problem in wet weather
  2. In photo — veer to right to exit to Lurgan St Near Doig St
  3. Veering to left takes you to concreted stormwater structures. This has stepped level surfaces, and then takes you through housing commision units to Lurgan St
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