The Greens will establish an Active Transport Fund worth $250 million annually for cycling and walking infrastructure. Investing in cycling and walking is a smart, cost-effective way to reduce traffic congestion and pollution. We can improve everyone’s health and wellbeing by making it safer and easier to ride and walk.
Our cities are congested with traffic and fossil fuel pollution is pumped out by cars filling our roads, turbo-charging global warming. For such a large problem, there is a smart, cost-effective solution right under our noses.
Investment in bikes and walking infrastructure will give Australians the opportunity to choose riding or walking as a safe, easy option and leave their car at home. This is particularly so for the half of all trips in Australian cities that are under 5 kilometres. This will reduce pollution, unclog our roads, and encourage physical activity that makes us all healthier and happier.
A federal fund for active transport
The Greens will establish an Active Transport Fund worth $250 million annually, to invest in cycling and walking in Australia.
The Greens believe active transport infrastructure should be funded by all three levels of government to ensure that local, state and federal governments are working towards a common and integrated vision. The federal government plays a role in funding roads, rail and other infrastructure – the Greens want clean, healthy transport infrastructure included in the federal transport plan.
Build active travel into new transport projects
The Greens want to make sure our bike and pedestrian networks are expanded across Australia, and we want to ensure they have smart integration with other modes, like catching public transport. We support the development of specific criteria to be applied to federal transport infrastructure funding, to ensure that all projects receiving funding include active transport infrastructure.
It’s time to fix our bike blackspots
It’s vital that we reduce the road trauma experienced by cyclists on our roads. In 2015, 32 cyclists were killed in serious accidents on Australia’s roads. The Greens’ federal funding commitment will enable infrastructure investment to fix and maintain roads and bikeways, to help reduce road trauma risk for vulnerable road users such as cyclists. This would include bike-rider friendly intersection design, separation of bicycles and motor vehicles, and improved road surfaces & markings. Our commitment will also boost infrastructure in the form of facilities provided to support and encourage cycling. We want to remove barriers to cycling such as inadequate bike parking and poor lighting of bikeways at night.
Active transport to make australians healthier
Investment in active transport will have other benefits than busting congestion and reducing pollution. It will make us healthier, both physically and mentally. Almost two-thirds of Australian adults and a quarter of children are overweight or obese. Getting on our bike for half an hour just three times a week reverses these risks, and has demonstrable mental health benefits. Half of the car trips in our capital cities are less than five kilometres, which is easily doable on a bike. All we need is the right infrastructure and investment to make these journeys quick, safe and easy – making us all healthier.