The City of Yarra has obligations to:
- maintain a functioning city by avoiding gridlock,
- prevent death and serious injury by protecting the public, and
- comply with Objective 6 of the Council Plan.
Streets Alive Yarra calls on the City of Yarra to comply with the above obligations by allocating a budget of $10m per year for active transport and local area place making. This page describes how the value of $10m per year is derived.
Actions to invest in active transport and local area place making include:
- widen footpaths (including moving kerb, gutter and drainage)
- build a network of protected bicycle lanes
- build raised threshold treatments (where footpaths continue at grade across minor side streets)
- plant trees (or move trees if widening the footpath)
- convert lanes or streets to shared zones (where lots of people walk)
- build wombat crossings (or raised zebra crossings)
- close or filter local streets (to keep commuter through traffic on the arterials)
Expenditure per treatment
Implementing each of these treatments requires a certain expenditure:
- widen footpath: $1,000 dollars per metre (one side of the street)
- build a protected bicycle lane: $1,000 per metre (one side of the street)
- build a raised threshold treatment: $150,000
- plant a tree (move kerb, excavate & make good) : $5,000
- convert a street to a shared zone: $300,000
- build a wombat crossing: $120,000
- close or filter a street: $100,000
Number of treatments
We can also estimate the quantity of each treatment required in Yarra:
- widening and re-paving a footpath: 30% of our 491 km of footpath, considering that many footpaths are too narrow (or are obstructed) to be usable by a wheelchair or mobility scooter
- build a protected bicycle lane: 50 km across Yarra, matching the 50 km targeted by the City of Melbourne (or 100 km for both sides of the street)
- build a raised threshold treatment: 420 across Yarra, or 20 in each of 21 LAPM areas
- plant or move a tree: 10,000 trees across Yarra, reflecting Yarra’s Urban Forest Strategy
- convert a street to a shared zone: 105 across Yarra, or 5 in each of 21 LAPM areas
- build a wombat crossing: 210 across Yarra, or 10 in each of 21 LAPM areas
- close or filter a street: 105 across Yarra, or 5 in each of 21 LAPM areas
Which leads to a total cost of $427 million:
If we build the above over 10 years, we need to spend $42m per year.
Therefore, asking for a budget of $10m per year is conservative, even though it is 10x higher that what we are spending now.
Independent justification for an expenditure of $10m per year can be collated by tasking Council Officers (or a consultant) to develop a costed plan to build a Yarra Principal Footpath Network and a Yarra Principal Bicycle Network over 10 years. This task could be completed as part of the development of an Integrated Transport Strategy.
Streets Alive Yarra welcomes your feedback. If you can contribute more accurate costings for a treatment type, or better estimates on how many treatments would be required across Yarra, please contact us. Please also note the positive business case for investment in active transport.