Good news and bad news about the bicycle in Australia

4 04 2010

Bad News

As an Adelaidean, living for the moment outside of Australia, it is sometimes hard seeing things back home and wondering what the hell is going on back there. Australia is already viewed by the rest of the world as a place where cyclists are hated, and where the helmet laws are viewed as an example of what not to do. And Australian kids are amongst the fattest on Earth.

Which is all why stories like this of the Victorian Employers Chamber of Commerce calling for bike licenses (and the comments it inspires) are disheartening.

But at least one bit of good news is that the Victorian Roads Minister (note, not a Conservative, but a Labor politician) doesn’t buy it for a second :

Roads Minister Tim Pallas said he did not support the idea of registering bikes.

“There’s not one country in the world that has in place a licensing or registration system for bikes,” he said.

“We’re about encouraging people to look at cycling as a viable transport option.”

Good News

There is some good news coming out of Adelaide: This Greenways and Cycle Paths Policy Document from the South Australian Labor Party. They were facing re-election, and they won, so it looks like the Adelaide to Marino Rocks Greenway is going to get built. Curiously on the map I don’t know why the old steam train route to Glenelg that is now the East-West Bikeway isn’t on the map. I had a few nice rides on that in ye olde days (and a Hope Valley to Glenelg walk once, where no one would sit next to me on a packed tram on the ride home)

So everyone in Adelaide, and in Melbourne keep cycling, and keep voting to keep those evil Chamber of Commerce type people out of positions of power.




One response

6 04 2010

Yeh… It’s funny there must be a lot of negative press against bikes down in the Southern States of Aus. Even my mother had an opinion about what kind of draconian legislation should be acted upon cyclists next and she’s never appeared to be terribly interested in bicycles or road infrastructure planning or law in the past…
Actually when I mentioned an incident that had happened to me a few months back her first response was “… personally I’m anti bikes myself…”

What the…!

So I guess you now have a choice if you live in Melbourne, Sydney or Adelaide… You can be for or against Bikes but reasonable discussion and consideration seems to be out.

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