Parramatta City Council Bike Plan: Local Route 17
The following is a submission to the Parramatta Cycleways Committee made by Nick Urbanik.
Local route 17 joins the University of Western Sydney (UWS) to the Parramatta CBD via Regional Route 3 and to the Parramatta Valley Cycleway, which shows signs of nearing completion. It runs the length of Thomas Street from the northern side of the Elizabeth Street Bridge to the underpass of James Ruse Drive where it passes through UWS.
- There is little indication to drivers turning from James Ruse Drive into Thomas Street that they should look out for cyclists;
- Some logos are placed too far from intersections, where cars can park over them.
- The design of wombat crossings does not take cyclists into account sufficiently, and needs a fundamental re-think for the entire Sydney area.
A Saddle Survey Conducted 8 AM, Monday 13 November
Going West from UWS
- At Start of Thomas Street, James Ruse Drive
- There is very little indication to drivers turning into Thomas Street from James Ruse Drive that this is a bicycle route. I consider this the most essential improvement to this route. As the father of a young cyclist, I know that drivers need to be aware of cyclists on the road. The first sign indicating that this is a cycle path is behind a tree, and it has an advertisement stuck on it. Motorists will see it only if they are already aware of its existence. There is a logo painted on the road, but it is far from the “No Standing” area and can be parked over by cars. My recommendation: A large sign be placed at the start of Thomas Street, not obscured by trees or other signs, that clearly indicates that this is a cycle way. A logo should be placed in a “No Standing” area next to the sign where cars cannot park over it.
- Pemberton Street, Morton Street
- A logo is placed next to a sign, in the no standing area after the intersection, where cars should not park over the logo, and the signs, though tiny, are not obscured.
- Approach to busy intersection with McArthur Street
- Busy intersections are always a danger point for cyclists, and motorists should be reminded of these dangers. I propose that there should be a logo and sign at the start of the no standing zone before the intersection.
- After the McArthur Street Intersection
- It was good to see the sign, though small, unobscured, and a logo in the no standing zone after the intersection.
- Wombat crossing at school
- The crossing is like others around Sydney: cyclists must either squeeze into the flow of traffic, or attempt to negotiate the gutter. Both pose dangers to cyclists, and it is clear that these crossing have been designed with little consultation with cyclists. A major rethink is required of the design of these crossings; I propose that the negotiation at the gutter be less crossed with ridges and changes in surface, and be more safe for a cyclist to travel over.
- After Stewart Street
- The small sign and logo are placed well.
- Before Elizabeth Street
- The logo is well-placed in a no standing zone. The small sign is place well just after the logo.
- At the intersection with Elizabeth Street
- The sign to Parramatta is clear; so also is the sign to UTS. I hope that when the Parramatta Valley Cycleway is opened, that the signs to UTS will be augmented with the destinations beyond.
Going East from Elizabeth Street
- At the start of Thomas Street
- The logo is well-placed in a no standing zone. Logos alone are not always a clear indication to motorists of the need to take great care of cyclists, as any regular rider of Clyde Street in Granville will tell you.
- After intersection with Elizabeth Lane
- There is a logo in a no standing zone, which is a good thing, but there is a tiny sign that is almost totally obscured by a tree. Motorists (or any other road users) are unlikely to notice this sign.
- After intersection with Betts Street
- There is a logo and small sign, both unobscured, close to the corner in a no standing zone.
- The wombat crossing at the school
- Same comments apply to the wombat crossing as when travelling west.
- Before McArthur Street
- There are no logos to indicate to motorists at this busy intersection that they need take care with cyclists, which I recommend.
- After McArthur Street
- There is a logo at the end of the no stopping zone, where it is less likely to be covered by parking cars. I would prefer more indication given to motorists turning from the busy McArthur Street, that this is a cycle way.
- After Wandsworth Street
- The sign and logo are not obscured.
- After Gore Street
- The logo was hidden by a car illegally parked in a no stopping zone. The small sign was hidden behind a large "Refuge Island" sign, making it invisible to motorists. Two semi-trailers passed at this time; one carrying a container, the other with two cranes for lifting loads.
- After intersection with Morton Street
- The no stopping zone ends too close to the intersection. This is clearly wrong for all road users, not just cyclists. This needs action. The logo is in a parking zone, but it does not need moving &mdahs; the no standing zone sign does. The small sign is not obscured.
- After intersection with Pemberton Street
- The logo is too far from the corner, and is partially obscured by a parked car, but the small sign is not obscured.
- At the intersection with James Ruse Drive
- There are too few indications to motorists turning from James Ruse Drive into Thomas Street that they nee to watch out for cyclists.
- Signs at James Ruse Drive end of Thomas Street:
- These indicate UWS clearly, and I hope to some destination beyond when the PVC is opened beyond UWS and Rheam.