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Where is the independent safety audit report?

March 21, 2018

As the Member for Sandringham and as a member of the government which commenced the Bay Trail project I remain strongly committed to the implementation of the Bay Trail on a course that carefully balances the competing needs of stakeholders including Beach Road cyclists, motorists, foreshore clubs and the high volume of beach users who access the beach at Mentone in the Sandringham electorate.

It is extraordinary that the City of Kingston are unable to produce a report to which they refer in “Kingston: Your City”.

In Parliament on 8 March 2018 I made the following statement:-

“The City of Kingston newspaper, Kingston Your City, February–March 2018 issue, contained a special feature lift-out titled 'Kingston's bay trail: the missing link'. Under the heading 'Cycling', the at-a-glance section notes that Bicycle Network Victoria conducted an independent safety audit of the proposal and has supported plans for the bay trail.

I note the reputational authority associated with Bicycle Network Victoria and the potential gravitas of the independent safety audit. I further note advice conveyed to City of Kingston residents on 23 February 2018 that council does not have a copy of the independent safety audit conducted by Bicycle Network Victoria and that council advised City of Kingston residents to contact Bicycle Network Victoria directly. I also note that I wrote to Bicycle Network Victoria on 18 February to obtain a copy of the quoted report and was told they were not aware of a safety audit.

I have proposed to the City of Kingston, in the absence of a publicly available report, which is made a very strong feature of in their newsletter to the people of Kingston and which is subject to independent assessment, that the City of Kingston put the bay trail on hold pending the distribution of the report for independent review. It is pointed out that 10 000 to 15 000 cyclists use this bay trail per week, and it is imperative that every safety consideration be taken into account.”

I still await advice from the City of Kingston as to where I can peruse the independent safety audit report. I also ask who wrote the report?

I also still await a reply from the Minister and Vic Roads for my request for a metre by metre overview of the proposed Bay Trail course.

At a time when then Amy Gillett Foundation is campaigning for “a metre matters” I find it extraordinary that the City of Kingston and Vic Roads are endorsing a plan to narrow clearance distances between cyclists and motorists along Beach Road which carries an estimated weekend rider population of 10,000 to 15,000 cyclists and is regarded as the best cycling boulevard in the world.

I call upon the City of Kingston Council to resolve the mystery of the whereabouts of the independent safety audit of the proposal referred to in the City of Kingston newspaper “Kingston: Your City” and make it publicly available for independent scrutiny by safety experts.