Harbour Bridge ramp plans open for feedback

Transport for NSW has opened community consultation on the proposed concepts for a ramp to replace the 55 steps at the north end of the Sydney Harbour Bridge. 

The two new concepts involve a linear ramp snaking through Bradfield Park and link with Alfred Street or a spiral ramp.

Up to 2,000 people cycle across the bridge per day. Upgrading the path would increase its capacity to up to 2,000 people per hour.

A ramp would not just benefit bike riders, it would also significantly improve accessibility for parents with prams and people with disabilities.

Consultation is now open until 27 June.

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However, in the latest attempt to stall any progress in improving accessibility to the Sydney Harbour Bridge, a Liberal MP has broken ranks with her party by siding with North Sydney residents who are opposed to a ramp design.  

North Shore MP Felicity Wilson told the Sydney Morning Herald that locals were “understandably concerned” about the latest concepts for the delayed project which was first proposed back in 2016.

“We were all promised that the past four years was being spent on new designs which would be great for both the local community and for cyclists, while respecting the heritage of the Harbour Bridge. Instead, these new designs are essentially the same as those rejected back in 2017,” Ms Wilson said.

North Sydney mayor Jilly Gibson has also called an emergency meeting for Monday night to propose the council spend up to $15,000 crusading against the designs for a linear or spiral bicycle ramp at Milsons Point.

While the Mayor has flagged that she feels "bullied and railroaded and absolutely distressed about the process,” Transport for NSW said that the agency held seven meetings with North Sydney Council in the past nine months which also included resident groups in Milsons Point and Lavender Bay as well as the mayor.

A Transport for NSW spokesperson also said under the linear option, an estimated five per cent of useable open space would be lost and only a “marginal” net loss of open space under the spiral option.

Replacing the Sydney Harbour Bridge steps is a priority project featured in Bicycle Network's Four Photos series. Click here to see the full list.

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