Riders will be expected to squeeze five bikes into one on-street car parking bay under a plan to free up Melbourne’s congested footpaths.
A meeting of the Future Melbourne Committee agreed unanimously agreed this week to ban free motorcycle parking on some footpaths (see list below).
They claim the loss of parking will be offset by turning 36 on-street car parking bays into free motorcycle parking for 170 to 190 bikes.
Four bikes in one car bay
The original estimate was 151 which is just over four bikes to a car parking bay which seems reasonable as above.
However, they have now revised their estimate up to 190 which means 5.3 motorcycles and/or scooters.
If it was just scooters, that might be possible, but it hardly seems probable and could lead to bikes being scratched and damaged.
The Victorian Motorcycle Council says that’s a “tall order” and made no reference to any expert advice.
Changes to CBD parking are now expected to happen soon with “no parking” signs appearing on the footpaths affected:
- Bourke Street between Spencer and William streets;
- William Street between Bourke and La Trobe streets;
- Flinders Street between Queen and Elizabeth streets;
- Elizabeth Street between Collins and Flinders streets;
- Collins Street between Spencer and King streets;
- Flinders Lane between Elizabeth and Swanston streets;
- Lt Bourke Street between Queen and Swanston streets;
- Lt Collins Street between Queen and Elizabeth streets.
Transport Portfolio Chair Councillor and motorcyclist Nicolas Frances-Gilley told the meeting that the plan would be reviewed and if not sufficient, more car parking spaces would be provided.
This map shows the car parking bays that will be turned over to motorcycles with original estimates of the number of motorcycle bays it would provide.
He also assured the meeting that they were not “anti bike” pointing out that he rides as does the committee chair, Lord Mayor Sally Capp and her husband, Andrew Sutherland.
Cr Frances Gilley and his Trans Alp
The Councillor also assured there was no intention to ban free footpath parking throughout the city, but would protect the rights of the growing number of pedestrians to footpath access.
He said they may look at converting or moving bicycle hoops and other street furniture to make way for pedestrians and perhaps motorcycle parking.
The Victorian Motorcycle Riders Association says the move set a “very very bad precedent” for other Victorian councils to follow suit.
“This ban is based on prejudice not fact,” says spokesman Damien Codognotto.
He says the on-street motorbike spaces “do not begin to cover the on-street and off-street motorbike parking losses while Melbourne’s 5 million population will grow to 8 million in 25 years or so”.