News & Discussion: Cycling

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Aidan
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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#76 Post by Aidan » Sat Mar 27, 2010 1:38 pm

JamesXander wrote:
Aidan wrote:
JamesXander wrote: I agree that riding a bike is good excercise, but I do feel that bike riders should have to bear some of the burden of instituting all this new infrastucture.

A rego to ride on perhaps bike lanes or dedicated bikes expressways is IMO the best plan, but perhaps it would be best left to an econmist to come up with the most efficient way.
The most efficient way is to ditch the user pays mindset! If we want to encourage cycling we should forget about trying to make it self funding. It will never cover its costs, and the cost per user will only be higher if we try to.
But dont you see, to fund the infrastructure where is the funding going to come from. its as much about mentality as it is about revenue as well. It may not cover costs, but it would encourage funding of new projects and sense of funding justice within the community.
Yes it's about mentality - as I said, it's about a mentality we should ditch! It's never going to cover the costs, but the cost per user will be much lower if it's free.
You cannot deny that there is a major resentment towards cyclists.
Yes I can. There is a major resentment towards those few cyclists who think the road rules don't apply to them, but there aren't all that many of those, and it hasn't, at least in Adelaide, translated into a major resentment towards cyclists in general.
Let me say this again, the infrastructure is NEVER going to come quick enough if we don't accept a user pay system,
Let me say this again, the infrastructure is NEVER going to come quick enough if we do impose a user pay system!
because of the funding and because of mentality that it won't be subsidised by the very people who use it. Argue what you will, but its the truth. Adelaide will never be a cycling metropolis unless a stream of funding is found.
I can't see how you can sustain that argument in the face of the existing government funding.
A $50 rego would be a TINY disincentive to ride your bike,
On the contrary, it would be an ENORMOUS disincentive. Currently I'm not using my bike. If there were a good network of cycleways near where I live, I probably would. But if I was slugged with an extra $50 tax, I wouldn't bother.
especially when compared to driving your car. Which you pay tax to buy, to buy fuel, and to have rego. Put yourself in the shoes of someone who is thinking of either riding or driving to work. The $50 annual fee could be recouped within the first week or fortnight through savings in petrol.
Yes, if you put yourself in the shoes of a hypothetical person in an unrealistic situation, of course it's going to look favourable. But in reality someone in a situation like that is more likely than not to start with a preference for driving. The cost or driving may make them switch to cycling - but if there's a $50 fee for that as well, forget it!
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Prince George
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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#77 Post by Prince George » Tue Mar 30, 2010 11:40 am

JamesXander wrote:Riding has a much higher risk of injury, and with more cyclists on the roads we will see more and more injuries related to cycling.
"njuries related to cycling" largely meaning "getting hit by a car while you happen to be on a bike". Cycling has a higher risk of getting injured, but a lower risk of causing injury. Consider this: so far this year, 39 people have died on SA's roads, and 280 have been seriously injured; of these, 2 cyclists and 2 pedestrians were killed, and 22 cyclists and 28 pedestrians were seriously injured. What do you suppose is the rate of injury for pedestrians & cyclists from causes other than car collisions?

For the vast majority of people, their car is the most dangerous thing that they will ever own, and driving it is the most dangerous activity that they will ever engage in (in terms of the danger posed to other people). If you doubt it, try spending a week going about your routine as a pedstrian or cyclist rather than a driver. We should not consider the licensing and registration as the price of admission, but something more akin to gun-licensing.

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#78 Post by JamesXander » Tue Mar 30, 2010 2:31 pm

Yes, I realise that Cars are the ones that are doign the damage in the majority of cases to cyclists. But its not as if Cars are going to disappear anytime soon. So if we keep throwing cyclists into the fray, more injuries are going to occur.


Unless we see better infrastucture. Which we won't, because the money just isnt there. The mentality towards the funding is wrong and so on.

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#79 Post by monotonehell » Tue Mar 30, 2010 5:57 pm

JamesXander wrote:Yes, I realise that Cars are the ones that are doign the damage in the majority of cases to cyclists. But its not as if Cars are going to disappear anytime soon. So if we keep throwing cyclists into the fray, more injuries are going to occur.


Unless we see better infrastucture. Which we won't, because the money just isnt there. The mentality towards the funding is wrong and so on.
James, it seems you main argument against anything is "it's not going to change, so..." A bit of self reflection may be required there.
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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#80 Post by JamesXander » Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:09 am

Victorian Employers' Chamber of Commerce calls for bike licenses

A MAJOR business lobby group wants cyclists to be licensed and have their bikes registered before riding on the road.

The Victorian Employers' Chamber of Commerce and Industry is calling for a debate on the issue and is running an online poll on its blog site.

Spokesman Chris James said cyclists were increasingly riding on roads with motorists and should be treated in the same way with an appropriate licence, road rules education and a registered bike.

Should cyclists have to be licensed and bikes registered? Have your say below

"There's no reason why one category of road users should be more special than the other," he said.

Mr James said cyclists should pay a "nominal" registration fee, which would go towards maintaining and upgrading the roads they used alongside motorists.

"Cycling is good for health, it's good for the environment and it's good for traffic congestion," he said.

"But they are using public roads without any form of fee. It's become a mainstream mode of commuter traffic and because of that, it's an issue that demands some attention."

Mr James said while motorists could easily be reported for traffic offences by their registration plates, cyclists were often able to escape without being identified.

But Bicycle Victoria CEO Harry Barber said most cyclists already had car licences and a call for registration was inappropriate.

"The idea of a plate on every bike when people have dozens of bikes and kids' bikes - it would be a nightmare," he said.

Mr Barber said most Melburnians who commuted to work by bike on roads were doing the right thing.

He said Bicycle Victoria supported better education for cyclists.

"They've got to learn the rules, they've got to learn the etiquette," he said.

"We know that there are Grand Prix drivers and others who behave like idiots behind the wheel and we know that there are some people who behave irresponsibly on their bikes."

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."

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#81 Post by JamesXander » Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:15 am

monotonehell wrote:
JamesXander wrote:Yes, I realise that Cars are the ones that are doign the damage in the majority of cases to cyclists. But its not as if Cars are going to disappear anytime soon. So if we keep throwing cyclists into the fray, more injuries are going to occur.


Unless we see better infrastucture. Which we won't, because the money just isnt there. The mentality towards the funding is wrong and so on.
James, it seems you main argument against anything is "it's not going to change, so..." A bit of self reflection may be required there.

Thats because nothing will change...fast enough

unless money is invovled.

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#82 Post by JamesXander » Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:17 am

BTW I love the 'imagine charging the kids!!!' catch cry.


You don't think there would be exemptions. The main call is for commuting bike riders, not every bike itself in australia

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#83 Post by Nathan » Sun Apr 04, 2010 10:48 am

JamesXander wrote:BTW I love the 'imagine charging the kids!!!' catch cry.


You don't think there would be exemptions. The main call is for commuting bike riders, not every bike itself in australia
How would you separate "commuting bike riders" from everyone else?

Regarding your large article, why is the Chamber of Commerce weighing in on how roads are used? Are we going to see the Office of the Liquor and Gambling commenting on the building of schools next?

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#84 Post by Prince George » Mon Apr 05, 2010 8:42 am

Mr James said cyclists should pay a "nominal" registration fee, which would go towards maintaining and upgrading the roads they used alongside motorists. ... "But they are using public roads without any form of fee. It's become a mainstream mode of commuter traffic and because of that, it's an issue that demands some attention."
This complaint, which I've heard before from other places, is truly laughable. Apart from the fact that cycling infrastructure costs a pittance compared to build and maintain compared to roads, that it would take a small army of bikes to produce the wear on the roads that a single car (or, worse, truck) would cause, that the economic cost of traffic accidents is estimated at over $17 billion a year, or that the cost of having 3.7 million overweight and obese Australians is about $8 billion in financial costs and $50 billion in the value of lost wellbeing, the simple fact is that there is hardly a cyclist in the country that isn't already contributing to Australia's roads through the taxes that they are already paying, and indeed the huge majority of them also pay registration on cars.

As the article itself mentions, there isn't a place in the world that charges registration on cyclists. Not Portland, who are embarking on a hundreds-of-million dollar cycling infrastructure program; not Davis, California, who have so many cyclists they have cycling traffic problems; not Holland, which has perhaps the clearest cycling culture in the world. The simple fact is that the difference in costs associated with cars vs bikes is so great that the savings alone can more than pay for the infrastructure.

Question for you, James, pedestrians use the streets too -- we have to provide infrastructure for them, they hold up traffic when they cross streets -- should they have to pay, should they have licenses, and registration for shoes?

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#85 Post by JamesXander » Mon Apr 05, 2010 9:25 am

I just want to clarify that I only started this off as a suggestion.


Pedestrians have always existed though, and you could say that Council rates do pay for pedestrian traffic. Cyclist infrastructure is something that is new, and there is no source of revenue at the moment. We have increasing urban sprawl and record growth rates across the country.


I just don't see where the money is going to come from, unless as I said a source of income is found. Perhaps an alternative is to slug a tax on petrol, to pay for cyclist infrastucture. That would have the double effect of putting more people in the cyclist lane, and an extra revenue stream.


But that wont ever happen.

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#86 Post by monotonehell » Mon Apr 05, 2010 8:17 pm

James, there is not a separate stream of revenue that is earmarked or allocated to any one expense. All taxes, rates, fees, and any other government income stream go into a public pool. So the money for any expense comes from the same place any other money comes from. Balancing the books is a "simple" matter of deciding what will or wont happen in which budgetary period. Since there's a huge economic advantage to encouraging cyclists, and a relatively tiny expense for the infrastructure (as George outlined above) it's a fairly easy expense to wear.
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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#87 Post by Omicron » Mon Apr 05, 2010 10:44 pm

I'll say again - trucks, cars and bikes should not mix on the same routes, and wherever possible, the three should be separated. A bike lane placed on the far left of a busy thoroughfare is a ridiculous idea - vehicles legally park there, buses legally stop there, overhanging street trees consistently drop branches, nuts and berries there, vehicles have to cross into the lane to turn left, and so on. It makes no sense to put the conflicting requirements of vehicle lanes and bike lanes on the same roadway separated only by a painted line (which is legally and practicably breached in many, many instances).

Or, in other words, the safest lane for cars is one that is not safe for bikes at all. Nor should it be.

And in terms of registration (and more importantly, compulsory third-party insurance), if a cyclist is proven to be at fault in an accident, they should be liable for the same costs incurred by a motorist in a similar situation. Should those costs be paid for by their insurance then so be it, but if they are uninsured, I have no qualms with the courts demanding immediate payment from one's own pocket. I hold the same view for motorists, of course - I don't care who you are, but if you cannot afford to insure yourself or are not prepared to pay out-of-pocket the (medical, repair, compensation) expenses of the person or property you damage in lieu of insurance, then you should not be driving (cycling). Simple as that.

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#88 Post by bdm » Tue Apr 06, 2010 8:19 am

Big agreeance with Omicron--riding (even within a bike lane) on a busy road is dangerous for all the reasons stated. I'd love to see the govt. establish roads for cyclists, trams and pedestrians -- building bike lanes, closing or restricting vehicle access, and throwing tram tracks down, combined with high density zoning around. Just one in each direction (North, East, South, West) would be a good start. I'd see The Parade and Prospect Road as ideal.

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#89 Post by JamesXander » Thu Apr 08, 2010 10:54 pm

I will post my pictures of the unfinished bike trail soon.

In response to Mono, its not so much about balancing the books, but sharing the costs.

for commuting cyclists I believe its freeloading to an extent. Cyclists in some form should make a contribution to building costs that ultimately the tax payer must outlay.

Is there actually a report out there on the economic savings form cyclists?

I can't really think of anything where an income stream isn't sought for a service or usuage. Boat rego. Car rego. School fees. Health gaps. Council rates. Airport taxes. Every service that the tax payer at some stage forks out to provide there is some sort of user pay system.



This is an interesting topic, and one I've never really thought about unril this thread!

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Re: Cycling around Adelaide

#90 Post by Aidan » Fri Apr 09, 2010 12:08 am

JamesXander wrote:I can't really think of anything where an income stream isn't sought for a service or usuage. Boat rego. Car rego. School fees. Health gaps. Council rates. Airport taxes. Every service that the tax payer at some stage forks out to provide there is some sort of user pay system.
There are indeed user fees for far too many things. But if you look there are plenty of counterexamples. Beach sand replenishment is one that comes to mind.
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