Feature — Parramatta Link EIS Submission
Parramatta Link EIS
The State Government recently released the Environmental Impact Statment (EIS) for the proposed Parramatta-Chatswood link. CAMWEST made a submission advocating the government to take the opportunity to improve cycling facilities. These are the main points we made:
- Public transport always supported. CAMWEST is always in favour of any improvements to Sydney’s public transport. This means cleaner air and less cars on the road, which naturally encourage people to cycle. We are therefore supporting the Parramatta Rail Link in principle, recognising that Western Sydney has suffered of poor transport planning for a very long time.
- Parramatta Regional Park impact opposed. CAMWEST is strongly opposed to the proposed impact on Parramatta Regional Park. The park has been strongly linked to cycling in Sydney for a very long time now. Many people enjoy cycling there, from triathlon training to families enjoying a weekend ride. The park has repeatedly been ‘nibbled’ at through its history, and it is time to stop. Cycling must not be stopped or affected during the construction of the Link.
- Integrate cycling into the rail network. This should be done by working together with local councils and the RTA. Cycling greatly enhances the value of rail. Below are some ways in which this could be done.
- Westmead Parramatta link. CAMWEST recommends that the opportunity is taken to widen the road on the park parallel to Park Parade and include a pedestrian path so as to leave more room for the cycling path. The road should also be made two-ways for cyclists. This will create a direct link between Westmead, a high-density area, to Parramatta CBD.
- Bicycle Parking Facilities at train stations.
CAMWEST recommends that, while improvements are made to
train stations, bicycle locker facilities are installed.
Allowing commuters to cycle to the station drastically
increases the ‘footprint’ area accessible.
Most people won’t walk more than 1 Km to the
station, while distances of 5 Km can be easily cycled. This
applies to Parramatta station particularly, where there are
existing cycleways from the Hills area, Merrylands, and
Telopea/Dundas Valley. It would also apply to Carlingford
station and the planned car park there, and Westmead which
could attract a lot of commuters from the Hills area.
This would mean more people catching the train instead of driving to work. It would also mean that CityRail makes more efficient use of its parking space, since many bikes can be parked in the space taken by only one car. To find out more about Bicycle Parking facilities, visit Bicycle NSW at http://www.bicyclensw.org.au.
- Provide safe, direct links to existing cycle routes. CAMWEST recommends that consideration is given to local cycle routes when building new stations. For example, the Delhi Road station is very close to the M2, which sees a lot of bicycle traffic. Links should be completed from these routes to the station, to provide a seamless travel path to the rail.
- Creation of new cycle routes. As a parallel to the previous point, it should be noted that new and upgraded stations will induce greater cycle traffic. New cycle routes should therefore be investigated to cater for it. Existing routes may need upgrading.
- Investigate ‘Rail Trail’ routes along the proposed link. The State Government is already building a number of rail trails, including the Parramatta to Liverpool cycleway. This is a great idea since the train usually follows a fairly flat route which is free of cars. Cycleways should be included along the Parramatta Rail Link wherever possible.
So what are your thoughts? Are there any other things the Government should do to improve cycling? Would you like to help us in writing letters and submissions? We can keep you updated if you join our CAMWEST-announce mailing list.
Let us know at contact (AT) camwest.pps.com.au, and we'll publish your thoughts. Join our mailing lists.
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