New Southbank separated lane revealed

The City of Melbourne has revealed its proposals for new separated bike lanes along Kavanagh Street in Southbank, part of a plan for better links between South Melbourne, Port Melbourne and the city.

The two-metre-wide lanes on each side of the street will run from Southbank Boulevard to Balston Street, and provide a connection to the recently installed lanes in Moray Street.

New bike facilities are currently being installed on Southbank Boulevard and at some future time City Road is expected to be upgraded for bikes.

Kavanagh Street is in the centre of what will be one of most residentially dense urban areas in Melbourne, a precinct where driving will be a forlorn hope and walking and cycling the best option.

None-the-less the city has had to tippy-toe around the issue of the required removal of a net 25 car parking spaces for the project, even though there are 3277 spaces available at nine commercial parking facilities within walking distance.

The city expects to finalise designs by March and start work around April-June, with 6-8 weeks of construction.

Kavanagh Street was identified for bike infrastructure in the 2016 bike plan, and confirmed again in the 2030 transport strategy, which proposes 50km of protected lanes on key routes in the city.

In line with Melbourne’s urban forest strategy trees will be planted as art of the project. There is a prospect that the centre median area on the street will planted with trees later.

The proposals are now out for public consultation and we urge riders to contribute feedback. The need for Port Melbourne-South Melbourne-CBD links through this, until now, impervious area has been under-appreciated for too long. This will be a vital connection when the various components are linked up.

And, street parking in this hidden away precinct on the fringe of the city has been free, so those who have been parking there for eons will be pushing the council for their privileges to be maintained.

More details about the project are here, and you can also take a survey.

Take the survey
An illustration showing how the Kavanagh Street bike lanes will work

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