Cycle path expanding

Rachel and Wes Brooks from Perth Electric Bike Hire on their new electric bikes at the end of the current bike path.   Picture: David Baylis        www.communitypix.com.au   d441896
Rachel and Wes Brooks from Perth Electric Bike Hire on their new electric bikes at the end of the current bike path. Picture: David Baylis        www.communitypix.com.au d441896

The path currently connects the Swan Valley to the rest of the Perth cycling network via Guildford Road, but it extends only as far as Henley Street in Henley Brook.

Extensions over the next two years will see the path stretched another 1.25km to Gnangara Road.

Following that, the dual-use path will eventually run the entire length of West Swan Road and connect to Great Northern Highway.

Perth Electric Bike Hire, based at Brookleigh, started in 2011 and is the only bike hire company in the Swan Valley.

Co-owner Rachel Brooks said she welcomed the cycle path extension.

�It would help a lot so they can actually do the 32km loop of the Swan Valley without having to ride on the road; if you�re not 100 per cent comfortable on a bike, then it isn�t a great road to be on,� she said.

�People are definitely put off by riding on the roads.�

Reid Highway and Great Northern Highway currently have shoulders where cyclists can ride, separating bikes and trucks by a white line.

Creating dual-use paths along these Main Roads routes would complete the City of Swan�s ultimate goal of a cycling ring around the Swan Valley that was completely separate to roads.

As these roads fall under the jurisdiction of Main Roads, the City will need to lobby the State Government to eventually complete the Swan Valley route.

City of Swan Mayor Charlie Zannino said the path was being incrementally built according to available funding.

The next upgrade is set to cost $775,000, $315,000 of which was from the Department of Transport.

�The ultimate goal is that the path goes all the way around (the Swan Valley) hooking into Gnangara Road and Great Northern Highway,� Cr Zannino said.

�Once the Perth-Darwin Highway comes into play, we might see some of those trucks taken away but I�d still like to see a path dedicated for walkers and cyclists.�