Belconnen Town Centre is approach 50 years of age. Lake Ginninderra was finished in 1975. The Belconnen Town Centre followed shortly afterwards. We are familiar with the renewal of Woden Town Centre. Now we can expect a similar process with the renewal of Belconnen Town Centre. The first place making activities started in 2020 with the development of the Circus Area.
The need for better infrastructure in Belconnen Town Centre goes back a long way. Back in 2004, it was quite clear that the lack of cycle infrastructure in the Belconnen Town Centre need fixing. As the 2016 ACT Election rolled up, ACT Labor was finally prepared to do something about it. Delays followed. The original planned completion date of 2019 became the construction start date. With the arrival of the 2020 ACT Election, the project was still not completed, and the scope significantly reduced. It is now finished, in part.
For cycling, ACT Labor is the driving force. The ACT Greens in comparison have proven unable to deliver on their ideas. Worse still, the ACT Greens have failed to approached cycling advocacy strategically. ACT Labor is delivering on its election pledges, although the achievement humble, as ACT Labor do not plan to do much. They lack the ambition necessary to get cycling moving in the ACT.
Belconnen Town Centre opened in the late 1970s. Over the last 40 years, we have had many plans to improve the cycle infrastructure but the progress has been slow. Here maps for the Belconnen district from 1992, 2004, 2007, 2011, 2016, 2019, 2022
For a few years now, the ACT strategies have promoted a Movement and Place Framework. The idea, best shown in pictures, is difficult to put into practice, as it presumes the ACT Planning and Transport directorates work together.
On the 32nd anniversary of the first day of sitting of the Legislative Assembly, Active travel was discussed during question time. This time the topic was Gungahlin town centre. Below active travel in the hansard from 11 May 2021.
Making our city cycling and pedestrian friendly means giving priority to cyclists and pedestrians. Crossing the road should not be a hard thing to do but all too often it is. Priortiy crossings are essential on CBR Cycle Routes but still not common.
If we want to get the job done, how much is really enough? Comparing the active travel pledges from the major parties at the 2020 ACT Election with historic benchmarks.
There was little cycling in the lengthy 2020 ACT Labor Policy Position Statement (no longer online) and most concerning was lack of specifics. ACT Labor did poorly on active travel in the 2016-2020 legislative term, however, seem to be doing better since. Minister Steel speech reaffirmed the pledges before the ACT Legislative Assembly (7 May 2022). This article compares ACT Labor’s progress on active travel between 2016-2020 and 2020-2022.
So much money is spent on roads. Here is a comparison of the investment in road improvement (duplications and widening) with other forms of transport. As cyclists, we are interested in bike paths, but the light rail is included, too.