The case for Glen Eira Road/Neerim Road as a "safe cycling route"

... in response to Glen Eira's Draft Integrated Transport Strategy

(This is a little out of our council area, but it's my commute so I thought I'd respond.)

Glen Eira Council is currently seeking community feedback on their Integrated Transport Strategy.

The document has some good aspirations, including a shift to 50% active transport modes (public transport, cycling, walking).  However the proposed actions are too feeble to deliver them.

The most glaring absence to me was the absence of Glen Eira Rd/Neerim Rd from the proposed network of "safe cycling streets". 

Draft "safe cycling streets"

Draft "safe cycling streets"

The Glen Eira Rd/Neerim Rd route ought to be included, because:

*There is a very large distance (2.7km) between the nearest east-west routes, Inkerman Rd to the north and Dover St to the south,  which would require a deviation of several kilometres for some cyclists.   Since the most suitable trips for mode switching to cycling are those trips under 5km, this is a large distance.

*This route was part of the Principal Bicycle Network.   It is already a well-used route, as shown by the Strava heat map below, demonstrating the need for a cycling route here.

* Glen Eira road is eminently suited for a main cycling route:  it is very wide, has no tram tracks, and even with fully separated lanes, could still fit a lane of parking along one of the sides of the road.  

* Neerim Rd is currently very narrow, with bikes forced to take the car lane.  Removing parking along this lane to allow a bike lane would increase traffic flow for cars.

* This route has many schools along it (Ripponlea Primary School, Caulfield Grammer, Shelford, Glen Eira, Mt Scopus etc) with poor provision for safe cycling for the students.  It's not clear how the 'Safe School Zones' will work for these schools with no east-west "safe cycling routes" closer than a kilometer away.

*While ideally a completely protected cycling route (as described in the strategy) would be ideal here,  a significant improvement could be made by merely removing parking, or even by removing parking during peak hours.   In this way it would be easy to stage the introduction of improved cycling facilities.  

Make comments on the Glen Eira Integrated Cycling Strategy here

This route is well used.

This route is well used.