Council gets on the bike
THE dream of better and safer cycling facilities in Ipswich is closer to coming true with the city council climbing on to pedal in tandem with the 24//7 Cycling Safety Fund.
The team was formed after the council and 24//7 agreed to share information about the council's plans for cycling infrastructure.
By pooling resources, the aim is to drive a common cycling strategy and lobby the state and federal governments with a united voice to ensure all Ipswich cyclists have access to cycling infrastructure.
Ipswich mayor Paul Pisasale made cycling facilities a key element of his campaign policies and made it clear he intends to deliver.
Troy Dobinson, the president of the 24/7 Cycling Safety Fund, was buoyed by the mayor's pledges and the council's united support.
"It's great that the council is working with 24/7 Cycling to make this a safer cycling city," Mr Dobinson said.
"Obviously you can see from Paul's election pledges he's committed to a cycle network between major centres in Ipswich. And he's committed to a safe cycling facility for Ipswich so it's just a matter of working together with cyclists and the general public to achieve this dream."
He has produced a draft design of the cycling facility that 24//7 and its growing band of supporters dream of achieving for Ipswich.
"The vision is to keep this a community project and have each club of cycling develop and maintain their facility alongside council," he said.
"Just like a community park it will be open all the time and use the full space of the land size.
"Ipswich cycling has never had a home and here is the answer."
He said 20 to 30 hectares was needed to develop such a facility but 24/7 was experiencing great difficulty finding the land needed.
"There's a site at Leichhardt that would be ideal," he said.
"The major message we want to get across is normal people ride bikes. Not everyone is racing and dressed up in lycra and going 50 kilometres an hour.
"It's probably the only sport where there's massive growth but it touches everyone because it's so versatile; from BMX to mountain bikes to road cycling, to fitness, health and wellbeing, it ticks all the boxes.
"At the 24/7 launch the other night I said we've got this great bus and now the council is on board, so we've got great drivers, but unless the people get on the bus it goes nowhere."
For more information go to http://www.247csf.com.au.