“Pop-up bike lane” for safer cycling

Cyclist welfare advocates from Bicycle Network taped up the southbound bike lane in Exhibition St on November 17 to promote safe bicycle riding.

The lane is only designated for cyclists between 7.30 and 9.30am on weekday mornings.

Bicycle Network believes vehicles often block bicycle access and poses safety risks to cyclists, despite restrictions.

The 100m Exhibition St bike lane between Little Lonsdale and Lonsdale streets was taped to separate cyclists from vehicle traffic from 7.45-8.15am on November 17.

“The pop-up protected bike lane will show how easy it is to install protected bike lanes and how they increase safety for bike riders and other road users, while also improving traffic flow,” Bicycle Network’s chief executive Craig Richards said.

But the City of Melbourne said Bicycle Network’s “pop-up bike lane” was put up without council’s knowledge or approval.

Council slammed Bicycle Network’s “ad-hoc actions” which it said could “unintentionally create safety risks to pedestrians and other road users, including cyclists”.

A City of Melbourne spokesperson said a permanent bike lane was not likely to be created on Exhibition St anytime soon.

“Exhibition St is one of the priority locations (for improving cycling facilities) however, the creation of a permanent bicycle lane is not a simple task,” the spokesperson said.

“The Melbourne CityLink Act, parking access, intersection design, centre island trees as well as access for retailers, businesses and residents are just some of the complex, competing technical matters to be resolved before a permanent bicycle lane can be established.”

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