Wednesday, June 16, 2010

Pedal power in Sydney

Business is booming for Sydney’s bike shops, with the roll out of Sydney Council’s cycling network and State Government support for a regional network linking 164 Sydney suburbs.

Clarence St Cyclery opened the country’s first women’s bike shop in May and customers are rolling in, store manager Jenny Fay said.

The increase in custom was significant and many women were looking for bikes with baby carriers, she said.

“We have every type of female cyclist coming in from regular commuters to high performance athletes, to recreational and weekend cyclists to mothers who want to carry their child on the back of the bike. We have a lot of women coming in wanting to get a bike with a baby seat,’’ she said.

“Our commuter and recreational bikes have shot through the roof, as has the high visibility apparel for people riding at night. We know there are more people riding to work because they are buying the clothing for the darker evening journeys back home.’’

Ms Fay said the new bike paths were making cyclists feel safer. “They are alleviating that fear that you have no chance on the street with cars,’’ she said.

Sydney motorists have become more aware as well.

‘’Drivers are beginning to realise that bikes are part of life and that they are getting more popular, especially for shorter trips. It’s a nice feeling when you are passing cars stuck in traffic,’’ Ms Fay said.

More women also were realising that commuting by bike not only saved time and money but also made gym fees redundant. Ms Fay quoted research commissioned by Sydney Council that predicted a 66 per cent increase in bike trips by 2016.

Sydney Lord Mayor Clover Moore has pointed to sections of the research which found that an inner city regional bike network would deliver at least $506 million - or $3.88 for every dollar spent - in net economic benefits in 30 years.

Cr Moore said women made up 70 per cent of people taking part in the council’s free cycling courses, covering bike maintenance and responsible riding.

“More than eight out of 10 people say they would take up cycling or ride their bikes more often if there were a safer cycle network,’’ Cr Moore said.

1 comment:

Anonymous said...

June 23, 2010

Media Release

No Parking Meters Party Bike Rego Plan Goes Down in Flames at Randwick City

The No Parking Meters Party has fallen at the first hurdle in its campaign
to persuade the local councils of NSW that they should impose a $50
registration fee on bike riders.

Last night Randwick City Council voted 13 to 2 not to take the idea to the
next Local Government and Shires Association meeting.

Greens Councillor Murray Matson who opposed it said after the meeting.

"Councillors from the Greens, Labor and the Liberals got up one after the
other and said it was a bad idea that would be counter productive in
improving road congestion.

Most of us also thought that it would be a nightmare for the RTA to
implement and an economically onerous task for Councils and the police to

Cr Matson said that the Greens considered that compulsory registration fees
would discourage individual members of society who want to practice positive
environmental practices in their own life styles.

He elaborated,

"Councils like Randwick can not on one hand talk up the need for positive
ESD action and on the other hand call for the economic punishing of
alternative transport users. Council did the right thing and killed off this
outdated idea before it picked up any momentum at the local Council level."

The only other Councillor who voted for Councillor Charles Matthew's (No
Parking Meters Party) defeated motion was independent Councillor Anthony
Andrews who represents the Maroubra area of Randwick City Council.

Councillor Matson criticized Councillor Andrews for ".letting down the bike
riders of his electorate".

He said,

"I can not understand how a Councillor who represents an urban electorate
could vote for an anti bike initiative. The bike riding commuters of
Maroubra must surely feel that Councillor Andrews is out of touch with his

CONTACT: Greens Councillor Murray Matson 0409-984-587