For those who visit or ride on Semaphore Road, it’s with considerable disappointment we must let you know of a petition from the Semaphore Main Street Association, aimed at the permanent closure of Semaphore Road’s unique off-road bikeways. These bikeways – constructed over a decade ago – did not intrude onto or otherwise take over existing footpath space & were created by narrowing the roadway from 4 lanes to 2 and lowering the speed limit to create a safer traffic environment!
The 38 petitioners include a prominent land agent, hair dresser, funeral director & several restaurants, cafes & gift shops. The petition – which will go to tomorrow’s Council meeting – appears to be based on the usual litany of misinformed opinions about ‘bicycle safety’, but its hidden agenda is clearly aimed at obtaining access to a much wider footpath space for out door dining, shop displays, advertising boards etc!
The petition’s covering letter offers no acknowledgement at all of the tremendous, proven economic potential & benefits that stem from encouraging people to shop or visit by bike, nor do the petitioners appear to understand the Council’s long-term aim to provide an ‘8-80’ bicycle network that serves a wide range of transport needs! The petition assumes that all bicycle users can safely ride on the road, and that none will simply ride on the footpath anyway – as they are allowed to do!
The PortBUG has long sought better promotion by Council of Semaphore Road’s bikeways, as well as installation of much better signage advertising their presence & distinguishing them from the footpaths – and we will continue to do so. Perhaps this petition will highlight for Council how important these issues really are!