Saturday, 13 June 2009

Toowomba Regional Council and BAZ signs

Riders may have noticed the rash of yellow bike logos around Toowoomba, in the city and dotted around the Hume Street roundabouts.

These yellow signs are called BAZ signs, Bicycle Awareness Zone, is what it stands for.

Even though BAZ signs are being put in place on Ruthven Street, paid for with the $40million plus of tax dollars under the control of the District Director of Main Roads, TBUG has been assured by very senior officials in both Queensland Transport and Main Roads that neither department supports them on work they fund with our tax dollars.

But go in they are.

And, of course, the other partner in the Ruthven Street highway works is our own council, TRC.

Years ago, when the old TCC was thinking about getting serious with cycling, it convened meetings of interested people, which is where the TBUG sprang from.

One result of all the consultation was the Pedestrian and Cycling Strategy, something the current TBUG supports and encourages the current TRC to fund more seriously than it currently does.

Here is a very telling section about how cyclists felt during the consultation process, that is relevant to both the BAZ signs fiasco on Ruthven Street (and all over the city) and also the 70 kph speed zone being imposed on us by the local office of MRD.

Turn to page 5

Sharing Roadways - Behaviours and Attitudes

There is potential conflict between motorists and cyclists when using the roadways. The main reasons for this are there is no allocated space for cyclists to ride comfortably alongside traffic and motorists generally have a poor attitude towards sharing the road with cyclists, finding them a nuisance rather than a legitimate road user.

• Motorists don’t always look for cyclists when changing their direction of travel and don’t give a cyclist much room when passing them on the road. Cyclists are generally forced to ride in the gutter or far left of the road on poor surfaces making their travel hazardous and uncomfortable.

Of course, TRC likes to place the BAZ signs in the very same gutters cyclists told the old council they did not appreciate being forced into.

Progress! It's a funny thing, isn't it?

No comments:

Post a Comment