Wednesday, November 05, 2014

How Much????????

Later edit: Well, never mind nearly half a million dollars being spent on green paint. I expect it was City of Boroondara that perpetrated this outrage of reversal of law. Maybe it was Vic Roads. I am only guessing. A mobile solar powered electric sign went up recently saying something along the lines in normal display, Cyclists avoid car doors, and in the alternating huge green display, Ride on the green. Can you imagine what is said to the first cyclist who complains to a car driver who opened a car door in front of him or her? 'Mate, the sign back there says you should ride on the green. If you did as the sign said, there would not be a problem. It is your fault.' This is so much sending the wrong message. It is the driver's responsibility to not open a car door in front of a cyclist, not the cyclist's responsibility to place him or herself in a position on the road to avoid opening doors. Of course a prudent cyclist will keep clear of car doors, but it should not be necessary. This is a very bad sign and very much sends the wrong message. If this happened in Netherlands or Sweden, governments would fall.

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I was in Glenferrie Road Hawthorn last week. The State Government has funded a special bike lane treatment. Along this stretch of road a cyclist was doored by a stupid and careless car driver who opened her car door as he was riding past. She knocked him into the path of truck which ran over and killed him.

Photo by Sharon Ho.


The bike lanes consists of white paint and green textured paint along the length of Glenferrie Road from Burwood Road to Barkers Road, a distance I suggest of less than one kilometre. I don't like the way the cyclist who is supposed to be on the green marked area is 'told' to give a wide berth to parked cars. No, the onus is on the car driver to not open a car door in front of a cyclist, not the cyclist to give a wide berth to cars. The yellow lines are the tram clearance lines and look how close the cyclist would be to a passing tram. Still, if it saves lives, good.Who knows what the short thin with line and the fatter one between the bike lane and the tram tracks are for and if you can't tell by looking, then that is a fail too.

What I was gobsmacked by were VicRoads signs proudly saying who was responsible for the project and that it cost $431,000. What? Nearly half a million dollars for some paint on the road? Unbelievable. Yes, there was planning work no doubt and various other costs but so much money just to do that?

27 comments:

  1. Agreed! I do my big weekly shopping there!

    Driving and parking in Glenferrie Rd is a nightmare, so my plan is a simple one. Encourage bikes and trams, and ban car parking TOTALLY in the main shopping centre. The car parking spaces on all those side streets would have to be doubled.

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    1. I dunno Hels. Trams and cyclist should be a priority but removing parking? The shopkeepers would become murderous. Councils who bought up big in behind shopping centres when properties were cheaper are probably miles in front now.

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  2. Wow I should take up painting bike lanes, I could do dots and stripes hell for that money I could do a nice peaceful garden scene or some death heads, what do you think.
    Merle..........

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    1. Merle, as an accomplished artists, you could do both, but I think death heads would be best.

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  3. In my experience they like to load up the costs of such "good deeds" with all sorts of incidental improvements (maybe some utilities fixed up - this was all attributed to the King St Cycleway in Sydney) and then also probably attribute what are in truth fixed costs (maybe the committee which existed anyway but spent some time considering it; etc etc) to the project.

    Do you think they think that announcing such big money numbers makes their good deed look all the more worthy?

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    1. Marcellous, I can't see any incidentals in this case, although I know what you are saying. Funny you mentioned King Street. It has been so problematic for so long, back to the days when trams ran along it.

      I vacillate between announcing the extraordinary cost and love us, look how much money is being spent on you. Note, it is not a marginal seat.

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  4. We have had lots of those cyclist lanes installed (not always sensibly) at a HUGE cost. Great idea but I am gob and smacked at the expense.

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    1. EC, I will never be surprised about what is spent in Canberra. It is a very rich area and I am sure that is taken advantage of.

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  5. I'm constantly amazed at the cost of publicly funded projects. The government is currently constructing a footbridge across Anzac Parade to cater for people attending the Cricket and Football Grounds and in preparation for the light rail still to come. I've forgotten how many tens of millions of dollars this footbridge is expected to cost but the figure was mind-boggling.

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    1. A great example Victor. Just wait to see the total cost of the light rail. Mind, it will be very successful and a good thing.

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  6. Nearly half a million dollars paid for the thinker who had the idea, the consultants (there is never just one) who decided where it should go and how long and wide it should be, the OHS reps who were instrumental in making sure those who carried out the actual work were safe, the workers who sprayed the paint and of course, the cost of the paint. Still a lot cheaper than our $40m footbridge across the Torrens.
    I agree with you there just isn't enough room on that narrow bike lane for cyclists to give cars a wide berth. Drivers must now be taught to look for cyclists before opening their doors when parked adjacent to a bike lane. TV advertising would be a good medium for this lesson.

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    1. No River. $40 million for a footbridge! There has been some publicity about the need for motorists to be more careful, but I don't know that any of it came from the government.

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  7. Poor cyclist and family.

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    1. Indeed Diane. I have mentioned him by name in the past, and pointed a strong finger at the guilty person, but no response from either.

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  8. Totally non PC but - maybe it was a Utopia project!! Roads are tonight's subject.

    Maybe some local Gov Dept + Vic Road have more money than sense.
    Cathy

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    1. Cathy, VicRoads is a road authority, yet I see daily examples of its incompetence. It so often spends money, our money, very badly.

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  9. They must have used designer-chic Ralph Lauren paints. They're so worth it.

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    1. Mitchell, maybe they hired Lauren as a consultant?

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  10. Andrew, it is incredible, how much public money we spend but not in the responsible and sensible way. In every country it is the same.

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    1. Gosia, there is no doubt in my mind that profits are high for the contractors who do the work.

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  11. Andrew, at my place bike lanes are red ...

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    1. Gosia, I think they are in Amsterdam too. We use the red colour where there is car and tram conflict.

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  12. Mind you, it IS very special green paint. Textured don'tcha know. For grip or somesuch for the cycle tyres. (*~*)

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    1. I have no doubt it is expensive River, and it takes some work to apply, but even so.

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  13. The law is that the person opening a car door must not obstruct anything, including bikes. So that sign is well wrong.

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    1. Well wrong for sure Fen. If I get the time and motivation, I might contact City of Boroondara.

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  14. Geez I would have done it for half that price and without all the smoko's :)

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