For cyclists, a path too risky: Auditor-general

The proposed map of major cycle and pedestrian paths. A recent report found the infrastructure in Perth very lacking.
The proposed map of major cycle and pedestrian paths. A recent report found the infrastructure in Perth very lacking.

AUDITOR-GENERAL Colin Murphy says cyclists take riskier routes because the bike infrastructure has not been complete.

This comes as Mr Murphy released his latest report: Safe and Viable Cycling in the Perth Metropolitan Area.

In his report, Mr Murphy said less than half of the planned cycle network was complete, with significant sections not built and older paths requiring upgrades to cater for increasing demand.

Transport Minister Dean Nalder released a statement on the same day as the report revealing the Government will pledge $27.07 million on Perth’s cycling network.

Mr Murphy said in the past 10 years, transport agencies have invested $143 million in cycling infrastructure, but only $20.3 million of this was spent on priority routes.

“Critically, many of the gaps are on priority routes along railway lines and freeways, and within the busy CBD and as a result, cyclists must choose alternate, less safe routes, or choose not to cycle,” he said.

“Local roads and paths, provided and maintained by local councils, vary in design and level of maintenance, creating conflicting and less safe conditions for cycling.

“Growing the popularity of cycling in WA, including through events such as today’s Ride2Work Day, has clear economic, health and environmental benefits – it reduces traffic congestion, lowers vehicle emissions and reduces health costs,” he said.