Our streets should be safe for everyone, no matter how you choose to get around.
But in our area, many of the roads are dangerous for people walking or riding bikes.
I remember farewelling my youngest child as she walked to school alone for the first time. I hid my anxiety with a fake smile!
In Victoria, just 1% of our transport budget is spent on active transport like walking and bike infrastructure, despite these being popular modes of transport for many.
So I’ve been calling on the state government to build safe separated bike lanes, wider footpaths, and to improve accessibility for people using wheelchairs and pushing prams.
For walking, there are many trouble spots around our area. To make it safer, and so we don’t feel forever hemmed in by cars, we need lower speed limits in many areas, improved enforcement, and more traffic signals. The lights at some pedestrian crossings take ages to change, while others change quickly. Pedestrians shouldn’t have to wait two pointless minutes for the lights to change.
We also need more pedestrian crossings and wider footpaths on some of our main streets, like Sydney Rd.
Between 2010 and 2014, there were 316 casualty crashes on Sydney Road, of which 131 involved a pedestrian and 66 involved a person riding a bike.
All six road fatalities in the Brunswick electorate since 2014 have been either pedestrians or cyclists.
Cars speed through pedestrian crossings in spots such as Brunswick Road at Ewing St where children are walking or riding to school, and Lygon St at Weston St where commuters are boarding trams.
I’ve campaigned for many improvements in our area and been successful with some, including speed humps on Nicholson St (where it curves and joins Albion St), a new pedestrian crossing on Moreland Road (west of Melville) and an upgraded crossing outside Pascoe Vale South Primary School, and reduced daytime speed limit on St George’s Rd to improve road safety near Merri Creek Primary School.
I’ll keep fighting for protected bike lanes, accessible tram stops, reasonable speed limits, and better lighting, signs, traffic lights, and intersection treatments to make our roads and paths safer for everyone.