The University of Tasmania's shift to Inveresk could be the "catalyst" for Launceston to develop integrated cycling paths connecting the city, the architect of Adelaide's bikeway says.
Daniel Bennett and City of Greater Geelong co-ordinator of transport Jarrod Malone gave presentations for a Bike Futures seminar in Launceston on Thursday detailing the two cities' experiences in integrating cycling into modern city design.
It took Adelaide three attempts to achieve a CBD cycling path that achieved good planning goals, stretching 1.2 kilometres down one of the city's busiest streets, Frome Road. The path connected the CBD to cycling paths to the north and south.
The bikeway was constructed in place of on-street parking. The on-street parking was moved across into a former lane of traffic where parking became available in off-peak times.
Mr Bennett said good design involved including input from all possible stakeholders - from users to business owners.
"The relocation of the university campus can be the catalyst for this type of project. For us, the relocation of the Royal Adelaide Hospital was the catalyst," he said.
"It's about identifying where people are coming from and where they want to go."
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The first two designs proved to be non-user friendly, causing issues for pedestrians and failing to achieve design goals.
The third attempt proved to be such a success that neighbouring councils were investigating installing them on busy suburban roads.
Hotels on Frome Road also played a role in the design, allowing large buses to pull in without impacting the cycling path.
Mr Bennett said traffic flow had improved, even with the removal of a lane traffic during off-peak times.
Geelong: Planning for cycling in a rapidly growing city
In Geelong, the Revitalising Central Geelong project allowed the council to access funding for cycling infrastructure, developing 13 kilometres for the Southern Link.
Mr Malone said getting cycling paths in place in the western side of the city was crucial with 110,000 more people expected to move into the area.
He said it was a challenge incorporating designated cycling paths on existing roads.
"That space is taken up by parking or traffic lanes, or changes to the footpaths, there's real contention between those," Mr Malone said.
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"The best thing is to get really good data. On the Southern Link we collected data on how much parking is used, how long people are staying, where were they going.
"That way we know that if we have to remove a car park, what does that mean for business? Can we offset it anywhere?"
As the location of Ford Australia's first manufacturing plant in 1912, the car has ruled the Geelong streets for over a century.
Mr Malone said the city had an opportunity to set itself up for the future of transport.
"The future of transport needs to move to more sustainable ways. We're not going to be able to drive around the way that we do now," he said.
"The actual long-term benefits are going to be massive when we see in 20 years time that we already have these dedicated services."
Launceston lacking connectivity for cyclists
The City of Launceston is continuing to investigate the future of transport in the region as part of various plans.
Malcolm Cowan, of the Tamar Bicycle Users Group, said Launceston lacked connectivity for cyclists, and ideas like two-way bike lanes on one-way streets could be investigated.
"We're looking at the City Heart project to help improve that connectivity," he said.
"It's about using the natural flows of people, where they want to go, making out city so they follow natural flow patterns."
The growing affordability of powered e-Bikes could also result in more cyclists taking to the streets, making Launceston's hills easier to scale.
Mr Cowan said it could take time to convince the public of the need to shift away from cars.
"We need to be able to give people a vision of the future, of how they perceive something, and that needs good consultation, working with people, working through their concerns," he said.
"But also showing them with good graphics and media, good evidence, of what the future can be and what it can look like."
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