Nipaluna/Hobart will be at the centre of an exciting national trial to roll out more bicycle infrastructure under an $18m fully-costed plan launched by the Greens today.
In the last power sharing arrangement with the Gillard Labor Government the Greens negotiated an historic $80m national bike path fund. This included a “Bike Blackspot” app and campaign where cyclists can log blackspot in existing bike paths, which generates an email and report to the Minister for Infrastructure, and contributes to a real time map of all Blackspots in Australia.
Today’s announcement would build on this legacy and incorporate lessons learnt from that funding program.
More than one in six Tasmanians ride a bicycle at least once a week yet since the Liberals have been in government virtually no federal funding has been allocated to underwrite the growth in active transport networks.
$18 million in federal funding would also help better enable holistic planning processes and help expand the existing Network into much needed places. This includes building a shared path along the Tasman Highway from Mornington to the Tasman Bridge, a path linking Lutana to Glenorchy, extension of the Intercity Cycleway to Austins Ferry, and further extension of the Whitewater Creek Track.
Greens senator for lutruwita/Tasmania, Peter Whish-Wilson said:
“The Greens are proud to be working with bicycle communities and have pledged $18 million federal funding to match the ask from Greater Hobart council mayors for an Active Transport Network (ATN).
“This is a positive initiative we can all be proud of and we urge both Tasmanian Labor and Liberal Senate candidates to match this pledge to help make Hobart a national leader in the rollout of active transport networks’.
“We need a reset of cycling policy in lutruwita/Tasmania to promote this climate-safe and healthy form of transport.
“In total, more than 50% of all Greater Hobart employment occurs in the Hobart CBD and traffic congestion has become dire.
“No matter how good drivers are to cyclists, there are always some roads that are dangerous to ride on, cyclists need their own network of shared paths to ensure a safe commute.
“The ATN will develop linked and accessible pathways throughout the Great Hobart area, supporting easy connections with active transport choices like bikes, scooters, mobility devices and wheelchairs.
Greens spokesperson for transport, Senator Sarah Hanson-Young said:
“We need a cycling revolution across the country and the beautiful Apple Isle is a great place to start.
“Cycling is an important part of protecting our environment from pollution and the green recovery we need in the face of the climate crisis.
“The major parties are backing transport infrastructure that locks in pollution, props up fossil fuel corporations and will make the climate crisis even worse.
“With this investment we can reap the rewards of a clean transport option while keeping people safe at the same time – it’s a win-win.”