Monday, June 04, 2007

Sydney getting on board-Pt. 2

Maybe you saw my past post about the city of Sydney, Australia investigating better motorcycle/scooter parking. I decided to send an email to the Lord Mayor Clover Moore about how I have the same concerns for my city. I made some suggestions on how to improve parking and suggested that she look at cities like San Francisco for inspiration.

Today I received the following response from the Mayor's office:
"Hi April,
The Lord Mayor has asked me to respond on her behalf to your email about scooter parking. My apologies if I am too late for the recent edition of your magazine.

There has been very rapid growth in motorcycle ownership in Sydney, particularly ownership of scooters in the inner suburbs. However, motorcycle and scooter riders have relatively little parking available to them, because the operation of ticket parking schemes and resident parking permits (for parking on the street) are not well suited to motorbikes. Some regulations, which are controlled by the New South Wales government, are also anachronistic. (eg, only one vehicle - including motorcycles - in a marked parking bay)

To address the problem, the City has commissioned a consultant to develop a detailed strategy to improve conditions for motoryclists and scooter riders. The strategy will address the problems facing motorbike riders, and examine some possible solutions, including changes to the way permits and parking tickets are issued. There will also be some investigation into ways to improve safety for motorcyclists.

I understand this policy will be considered by Council in its draft form, then exhibited for public comment and feedback, probably late this year. We will be looking at lots of international examples of better ways to do things, including the problem of more secure parking for easily stolen scooters. There are a few design options, and we want one that is user friendly without having too much of an impact on the look of the streetscape. Maybe something like low bronze tethering racks parallel to the kerb, or pull-up rings in the pavement.

If I can help with something specific, please let me know.

Anthony Mifsud, Research Officer
Office of the Lord Mayor
City of Sydney"

Well, I was impressed with the fairly quick response and I am glad to see that it seems to be a priority for the city. I will be responding to Mr. Mifsud later this week with some examples and names of DOT contacts who may help. Look to the August issue of Scoot! for a feature story on scooter parking.

Is your city doing anything specific about scooter/motorcycle parking? Let me know.

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