This image shows how public space is allocated to different modes of transport in Cremorne. The colour red indicates space for cars and car parking. There is no space allocated to cycling, via separated or protected bicycle lanes.

Image credit: Streets Alive Yarra

Problem

The problem with allocating all street space to driving is that our streets are now becoming gridlocked in peak hour. In Cremorne, Balmain Street and Cremorne Street can back up 200 metres each in peak hour, because Church Street and Swan Street are at a standstill. Our streets can no longer carry all the people & goods that need to travel in and out. This is affecting residents, commuters and businesses.

Video credit: Streets Alive Yarra

Solution

The solution is to allocate some space on key streets to more geometrically efficient modes such as walking and cycling, often by removing a lane of parking. If people feel safe, and can avoid congestion, then a good chunk of people will voluntarily change modes. This reduces the number of people driving, which speeds up traffic for those who need to drive. Overall, this makes our streets better for drivers.

Managing parking

Removing parking from key streets can also affect residents, commuters and businesses. The solution is to better manage the available parking space on residential streets. At the moment, demand is much higher than supply, and pricing can help bring this back into balance.

Reference

This “arrogance of space” analysis follows the method proposed by the Copenhagenize Design Company, and applied to analyse Paris, Copenhagen, and Barcelona.