Will the Warringah Freeway Upgrade improve riding and walking? – Bicycle NSW

The detour proposed by the project team for pedestrians and cyclists after the removal of the shared path underpass. The underpass will be closed from 3rd October (Source: CPBD / TfNSW). At a meeting on 19th September, the team admitted that the proposed arrangements for pedestrians and cyclists are not acceptable. Under Condition E200, a safe and convenient route across Falcon Street must be delivered. We urged the project team to develop and implement a solution before removing the underpass.

Transport for NSW must back its own policies

Unfortunately, the contractors are working to the Conditions of Consent that were formulated in 2017. Over the last 5 years, the political and strategic context has shifted significantly in favour of active transport.

TfNSW is now bound by the Providing for Walking and Cycling in Transport Projects and Road User Space Allocation policies which prioritise active transport over private vehicles. These excellent policies are an important lever to push back against the 70-year-old paradigm of building more roads to reduce traffic congestion.

250,000 vehicles use the Warringah Freeway each day. Creating more space for vehicles is like trying to put out a fire with kerosene. It is unsustainable economically.  By 2031 traffic congestion will cost the economy $39.6 billion without a concerted effort to reduce private car use for short daily trips.

Warringah Freeway is 15 lanes wide in places. It is unreasonable to claim there is ‘not enough space for excellent active transport infrastructure. TfNSW must review the Conditions of Consent, pause construction if necessary and develop detailed designs that maximise the future outcomes for walking and cycling.

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