Melbourne’s much-lauded motorcycle footpath parking is under siege by Lord Mayor Sally Capp who says a survey shows that motorcycles and scooters are a major obstruction to pedestrians.
While not saying motorcycles should be banned from footpaths, Sally said “more (on-street) spaces for motorcycles to park are needed so they park there instead”.
Speaking on radio 3AW this morning, she acknowledged that 1300 motorcycle and scooter riders come into the city every day and council provides only 280 parking spaces.
“Our biggest congestion issue in our CBD is actually on our footpaths,” she told morning radio announcer Neil Mitchell.
Draft Transport Strategy
She said their draft Transport Strategy conducted a survey on footpath obstructions.
It found that motorcycles, scooters, bicycles and cafe furniture were major pedestrian obstructions.
Neil butted in: “So can we get the motorcycles and bikes off footpaths?”
Sally acknowledged that “under road rules (motorcycles) can park on footpaths”.
She suggested car parking spaces could be turned over to motorcycles to encourage them to park there instead of footpaths.
Neil replied, “that worries me more that you will take spots away from cars.”
“We’re not say we will do it, but considering,” Sally said.
“We need to provide spaces for motorcycles as well.”
Siege on free parking?
Neil increased the siege on motorcycles suggesting paid car parking spaces converted to motorcycle parking should also be paid, not free.
Sally said they would consider that issue, but said their main reason for providing these on-street spaces would be to encourage riders to use them, suggesting they should be free.
She also mentioned that people with disabilities had complained that footpath motorcycle parking next to disability parking spaces often prevented them from accessing their car.
Victorian Motorcycle Council media spokesman John Eacott said he was concerned about the Lord Mayor’s attitudes to pavement parking.
“She is putting her head on the chopping block as this is a Victorian State law (albeit it Council controlled) and she has obviously forgotten the outrage the last time this happened some 30 years ago,” he said.
More parking bans
Meanwhile, more motorcycle and scooter parking bans have been imposed in Melbourne.
This photo shows an area behind Federation Square near to where a huge new bicycle parking area was recently installed.
Motorcycle Riders Association of Victoria spokesman Damien Codognotto asked why neither the Motorcycles in Melbourne Committee nor the Motorcycle Expert Advisory Panel at VicRoads were first consulted.
“What is the point of having advisory committees if they are by bypassed from the very people who should be seeking their advice?” he asked.