Did you count or were you among the counted? Super Tuesday, March 3rd, 2015

Yesterday was a special day in the cycling calendar.  The first Tuesday of every March is Super Tuesday.  On that day, all over Australia, between 7 and 9am at thousands of sites, cyclists are counted.  The chances are that if you were cycling in the Geelong area yesterday morning, somewhere along your path, you were noticed and added to the tally.

A number of our members took part in the count.  Rosemary was, as usual, in Geelong West. BikeCount3.3.15.JPG RESIZE

The enigma here is how she carried the chair!

Allan, Rick and Kelly were counting in the north of Geelong, where, increasingly, people are making use of cycling to commute to work and school.

Helen was in Geelong West, on the corner of Minerva Road and Aberdeen Street.  It was good to see an increasing number of children riding to school, with or without adult supervision.  They seemed confident, and most chose to ride on the footpath (legal for children under 12 and those escorting them).  This is a very busy intersection at peak hour.  As well as hundreds of cars, there were 55 buses (most between 8 and 9pm) and around 50 b-doubles and larger trucks.  The crossing supervisors did a brilliant job of keeping the school children safe.

The data from Super Tuesday is used by councils to help them decide where cycling infrastructure is needed, and also to see trends in cyclist numbers. This year, cyclists were counted by gender.  The number of female cyclists is considered an indicator of the success (or otherwise) of bicycle infrastructure.  It will be interesting to hear the ratio of men and women at our Geelong sites.

There’s a summary report for 2014 on the Bicycle Network’s Super Tuesday web page.  Keep an eye on this page for updates of the 2015 count.

Thanks to all of our volunteer counters.  Cycling Geelong receives a donation from Bicycle Network for each person who completes the bike count.

Volunteers, please let us know your rider numbers, and how many of the total were women.

 

Submission regarding cycling infrastructure

made to the Mayor and Council, City of Greater Geelong, by Cycling Geelong Inc.

22 February 2014

 This submission has been written by the President and the Secretary of Cycling Geelong Inc.

Our contribution to debating and planning cycling infrastructure in the Geelong region is that we consider this in a context of developing the region as an important cycling destination for local people, for people across Australia more broadly, and as part of our international tourism strategy.  We would like to encourage more systematic focus on establishing the business case for this, and for planning infrastructure to support the development of a strong image of the region as a safe and enjoyable place to cycle. We suggest there is value in Council considering developing such a business case and planning details for the Greater Geelong LGA.

Our contention is that there is a strong business case for Geelong and the Bellarine Peninsular to position itself as an important cycling destination both nationally and internationally.  Our contention is based on:

  •  We have an interesting and scenic region where the terrain is friendly to cycling;
  • We already have a strong cycling infrastructure in the region that can only get better, and on which we could base a much broader cycling strategy;
  • We have a large number of eating establishments, wineries and accommodation options for cyclists;
  • We have small towns and villages that are not far apart for cyclists;
  • We have a good cycling climate in all seasons, but one that provides northern hemisphere cyclists with cycling touring options during their winter.
  • We already have a national and international profile in cycling with a number of high profile champions over the years and the successful UCI event in 2010.

There is evidence that cyclists as tourists are good spenders since they move slowly enough through a region to make good use of eating and accommodation businesses as they go, and since cyclists can carry only a limited amount on their bicycle such that they need to source most of their supplies locally.

The UK-based CTC report at http://www.ctc.org.uk/sites/default/files/file_public/economybrf.pdf provides some excellent examples of economic value of cycling to rural and regional communities, and how that value can be strategically leveraged.  The evaluation of economic value of cycling to communities in Europe and the US is also provided in a number of reports available at http://cyclingresourcecentre.org.au/page/evaluation_monitoring/cycling_benefits_economic.

In short, strong cycling participation by local people and by tourists adds considerable value to a local economy.

Accordingly, our suggestion is that in our region we should be planning bicycle infrastructure in a strategic context to position and promote the region as a highly attractive destination for safe, enjoyable, and well supported cycling tourism and participation.  We further suggest that funding a process to develop a business case and a planning process would be an investment well made in our community.

Peter Smith                                                                                          David Jones

President, Cycling Geelong                                                                Secretary, Cycling Geelong

Editor’s note:  This is Cycling Geelong’s official response to the Mayor and Councillors of The City of Greater Geelong who will vote on funding for the Principal Bicycle Network at next Tuesday evening’s Council Meeting.

Bikes for Geelong teens

Do you know a teenager in Geelong who wants to earn a new bike?

  

In case you haven’t heard, we’re excited to deliver a new program called The Happiness Cycle aimed at getting Australian teenagers physically active.

The good news is that our next event is being held in your local community in just over three weeks!

We’re looking for 15 and 16 year olds who live in the City of Greater Geelong to attend our event on Saturday 8th February at the Barwon Valley Activity Centre.

For the chance to earn a brand new bike, all the teenagers have to do is:

  1. Register at www.happinesscycle.com.au
  2. Attend the event on Saturday 8th February
  3. Assemble their brand new bike, collect their helmet, locks and lights and ride home!

There’s also a smartphone app to download called HappiCycle which maps out their ride and lets them compete against their friends.

Help spread the word and let’s get teenagers in Geelong on their bikes and physically active!

For more information, visit The Happiness Cycle website.

Details:

What:  The Happiness Cycle – Geelong
When:  Saturday 8th February
Where:  Barwon Valley Activity Centre
Who: 15 and 16 year old teenagers from Geelong