Today, Jo Clay MLA has welcomed Minister Steel’s new consultation on active travel, but urges greater commitment to delivery.
“Canberrans love active travel and understand the need for more of it. Active travel is not only a great way to keep healthy, it also reduces congestion on our roads for those of us who need to drive.
“Active travel helps out everyone, even those who drive,” said Jo Clay MLA, ACT Greens spokesperson for Active Travel. “Every person you see walking or riding is one less car in front of you at the traffic lights.
“But we need to do more to encourage active travel. Before COVID, congestion in Canberra was getting worse at a rate over three times faster than most other cities in Australia. We love talking about active travel in the ACT but we don’t invest enough on the ground to make a difference.
“I’m delighted to see the Minister’s commitment to separated cycle paths, but his budget allocations don’t add up. In June this year the Minister said he was spending one fifth of our active travel budget on a sealed highway shoulder on the Monaro Highway that can accommodate cycling. This is not dedicated cycle infrastructure. The Monaro Highway shoulder being considered active travel infrastructure is not in line with Australian Standards around safety and should not count as the single biggest part of our active travel spend.
“Along with the fact that few cyclists will want to share the road on a 100kph highway shoulder, women have told us that they are particularly affected by the lack of safe active travel options in general around our city and have called for separate infrastructure.
“The Greens want at least 20% of the roads budget to be spent on dedicated active travel projects. I heard a need for more funding for dedicated active travel really strongly from the community when I consulted on my Active Travel Discussion Paper in March this year. The money needs to deliver safe, usable infrastructure that will encourage Canberrans to ride, walk, or wheel around our city without having to compete with cars. On paper it looks like we’re getting close but the numbers don’t stack up.”
- November 2021 Marisa Paterson released her discussion paper focussing on women’s use of active travel in Canberra’s south
- March 2022 Jo Clay MLA’s Active Travel Discussion Paper was released to the public
- 5 May 2022 – Parliamentary Question by Jo Clay regarding $77m active travel pipeline (p. 192)
- 9 June 2022 – Parliamentary Question by Jo Clay regarding how the Monaro Highway is active travel (p. 57)
- 14 July 2022 (today) Minister Chris Steel released his Active Travel Plan
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