Construction has begun to extend one of the City of Sydney’s busiest cycleways connecting the Sydney Harbour Bridge and Chinatown.
Lord Mayor Clover Moore said the last sections of the Kent Street cycleway, extending the existing link from Druitt Street to Liverpool Street, was another important step in building a network of safe bike paths.
“The City’s extensive research, overseas experience and the NSW Government’s own City Centre Access Strategy all make the case for a connected network of separated cycleways clear,” the Lord Mayor said.
“The completion of this connection will improve safety and traffic flow, and align well with future plans for light rail, better pedestrian movement, bus improvements and other transport changes in inner Sydney.
“An average of 2,000 bike trips are made every weekday on the existing Kent Street cycleway. Giving people different transport options is good news for all road users because it helps reduce congestion for those who do need to drive.”
St Andrew’s Cathedral School, a major stakeholder in the current “missing link” of the Kent Street Cycleway, has welcomed the extension work.
“We have been extensively consulted by Council, and have worked cooperatively with them on this project,” Head of School, Dr John Collier, said.
“The new cycleway will pass immediately in front of the school’s entrance. St Andrew’s Cathedral School is very pleased the school’s student drop-zone will be preserved, thus maximising safety for children.”
The Lord Mayor said she hoped adding another section to Sydney’s growing bike network would encourage more people to ride – helping reduce congestion by freeing up space on public transport and on the roads.
“The NSW Government has set a target of doubling local and district trips by bike by 2016 and our work will be an essential contributor to meeting that target,” she said.
“We’ve already doubled bike trips in the city centre in just three years and we know those numbers will keep climbing as cycleway connections are completed, providing safe and convenient routes across the city.”
BIKESydney President David Borella hailed the completion of the northern and southern extensions of the Kent St cycleway as a key development for cycling within the city centre.
“Providing coherent north-south and east-west crossings of the city for riders is now our highest priority,” Mr Borella said.
“Completing the southern end of the Kent St cycleway in particular will result in a significant increase in bike commuting trips into and through the city centre. At this stage, it’s all about completing connections.”
The Kent Street cycleway extension involved extensive community consultation during the detailed design process. Construction is expected to be completed by mid-2014.