Keeping Canberrans connected – Labor to invest in footpath and cycleway upgrades

Pedestrians and cyclists will benefit from a better connected cycle and path network in their local suburb under a Labor Government, with the ACT Government and Federal Labor committing $5.8 million to a deliver a number of important projects across the city.

Through a joint funding agreement under a future Federal Labor Government, key bike path links in Kambah, Mitchell, Lyons, Belconnen and the Inner North will be built or upgraded to better connect Canberrans travelling along these key routes.

Canberra has a world class cycle network – with $30 million additional investment in footpath maintenance, cycling and walking route upgrades and age-friendly suburbs improvements committed to the network since 2016.

The investment from a future Federal Labor Government is on top of funding commitments for stage two of light rail to Woden, more funding for public health services and an indoor sporting facility in Tuggeranong.

Local Labor Minister Chris Steel said the announcement highlights Federal Labor’s commitment to local infrastructure in Canberra suburbs.

“The $260 million National Bike Paths Strategy is the largest ever investment in shared pathways from a Federal Government,” Minister Steel said.

“We will work with a Shorten Labor Government to get the most out investment in bike paths by jointly funding key projects that better connect Canberrans.

“These specific projects have been identified by Government and the community to address missing links on Canberra’s cycle and footpath network to make it easier for Canberrans to move around our city.”

The projects funded include:

  • Sulwood Drive Kambah – The project will provide a safe and convenient link along Sulwood Drive between Drakeford Drive and Athllon Drive by constructing an off road walking and cycling path 4km in length. The new path will improve safety along Sulwood Drive, which is an 80k/h arterial road without walking or cycling infrastructure and enable Kambah residents to access the Wanniassa shops as well as Mount Taylor. It will also provide an east-west connection between two existing cycle routes following Drakeford Drive and Athllon Drive. The project will investigate two alignment options, one along the southern side and one along the northern side of the road to determine the final alignment.
  • Belconnen Bikeway from University of Canberra to CIT-Bruce (Stage 2 of the current project) – The project will extend the Belconnen Bikeway from the University of Canberra to CIT-Bruce, along Haydon Drive, where it will link to the existing City-Belconnen cycle route. The new path will provide access to CIT-Bruce, AIS and Radford College. A new 2.5m wide asphalt cycle path will be built next to the existing footpath along the eastern side of Haydon Drive between College Street and Purdie Street, Bruce. The ACT Government has already funded stage 1 of the project from Coulter Drive to Haydon Drive and along Benjamin Way from College Street to Emu Bank.
  • Heysen Street link from Lyons to Woden Town Centre (Stage 2 to current project) – New path along Devonport Street and Launceston Street between the end of the Heysen Street link and Melrose Drive, Lyons. This connects with the existing $1.2 million in upgrades funded on Stage 1 in last year’s Budget connecting Weston Creek with the Woden Valley.
  • EPIC light rail stop to Mitchell – Construct Stage 2 of the Flemington Road shared path between Randwick Road and Morisset Road, Mitchell. The project will address a gap in the walking and cycling network between the EPIC light rail stop and Mitchell. Works include a 2.5m wide asphalt off road walking and cycling path. Addressing this missing link will enable safe access for both employees and customers from the new Light Rail stop safely to the Mitchell employment area.
  • ANU-Dickson cycle route – This project will reduce the potential for conflict between path users by providing separate walking and cycling paths along McCaughey Street between Masson Street and Barry Drive, Turner. ANU has 22,000 students and staff, and this densely populated area is a key destination for commuters. Works include constructing a new footpath and converting the existing asphalt path to a cycle path as well as providing priority crossings of driveways.

“I thank the Shadow Minister for Infrastructure, Transport Cities and Regional Development Anthony Albanese and his Federal Labor colleagues for working with the ACT Government on a package of projects that will keep Canberrans connected and active,” Minister Steel said.

It’s also great to have a strong Labor team here in Canberra – including Andrew Leigh, Katy Gallagher, Alicia Payne and David Smith, who are working hard to deliver public infrastructure investments in Canberra.”

Over the past six years, Canberrans have experienced life under a federal Liberal Government – with job cuts and decentralisation, cuts to health, and a lack of Federal infrastructure funding for the Territory.”

/Public Release. View in full here.