Cycleway protest

img_4817About 25 cyclists and pedestrians met in Jesmond Park this morning for a photo to protest against the current plans to remove the cycleway when the Rankin Park to Jesmond bypass is built.

Some things I learned today…

  • There were a lot of people who submitted responses to¬† the RMS earlier in the year, and who feel they’ve been ignored.
  • There are a lot of alternative solutions on how to maintain the cycleway, all of which are better than the two ridiculous ‘solutions’ investigated and dismissed by the RMS in the environmental impact statement (EIS).
  • The cycleway is an important part of the “Two City Circuit”, a 50km loop incorporating many off road cycle paths in Newcastle and Lake Macquarie.
  • Somebody who attended the drop-in information session at Silver Ridge Community Cottage yesterday heard from an RMS representative that this issue of the cycleway being cut is the biggest source of complaints in the evaluation process.
  • Other people besides me were frustrated with how the EIS document is split up into 82 separate PDF downloads! Is it too cynical to think they’re deliberately making it hard for people to see and respond to the EIS??
  • There is one more drop-in information session to be held Thursday 1 December 2016 between 3pm-6pm at Silver Ridge Community Cottage, 13 Iranda Grove, Wallsend.

Probably the most important thing I learned this morning is that the submissions made earlier this year were to the Roads and Maritime Services (RMS), which they evaluated and then produced the current environmental impact statement (EIS). Submissions to this current EIS will be evaluated by the Department of Planning and Environment (DPE). i.e. it is a different department evaluating the EIS responses.

So it is vital that submissions be made again, in greater number, with greater detail, and with greater urgency.

Whereas the RMS seems to be only interested in roads, lets hope the DPE is actually interested in the environment.

img_4820

Leave a Reply

Your email address will not be published. Required fields are marked *