Car-centric Sydney becomes latest city to embrace bicycle transport

photo NSW Tourism The City of Sydney is embracing cycling with hundreds of miles of cycle lanes

Sydney, Australia, is the latest city to embrace cycling as a mode of transport, with plans to build 200km of new cycle lanes, including 55km of segregated tracks.

Currently, the city centre has few facilities for utility cycling, with overall trips at 1-2%, many of which fall into the leisure cycling category, and cycle commuting under 1%.

The new lanes form part of the City of Sydney's Cycle Strategy And Action Plan, which aims to double cycling in the city in the next five years, with a view to increasing it to 10% of all trips by 2017.

LCC communications officer said, "Sydney is a lovely city, but has never been cycle-friendly.

"Optimists would say these changes are part of a global phenomenon that's seeing other cities, such as London and New York, starting the transition from wholly car-centric transport systems to street designs that also encourage more cycling and walking.

"For all these places, though, there's long way to go before they have anything like the facilities of world-leaders such as Amsterdam or Copenhagen."

The city of Melbourne is to benefit from a Cycle Hire Scheme, which launches at the end of May 2010. It will feature 50 docking stations and 600 bikes.