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Sunday, June 27, 2010

Cycling to the top

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The Sir Leo Hielscher Bridges span the mouth of the Brisbane River.

Climbing to almost 80 metres above the water, they allow huge volumes of traffic to flow from one side of the river to ther other.

A bike path on this new bridge was officially opened today, which for the first time, allows pedestrians and cyclists to stand at the top of this magnificent gateway to the city and enjoy some breathtaking views out to the bay and back to the city – views you can’t really get in a car as you’re not allowed to stop at the top.

There are only two flies in the ointment which I’m sure will be fixed soon. The first is a 10km/h speed limit on cyclists using the bike way. The problem is that many cyclists have difficulty keeping a bicycle stable at speeds under 10 km/h, so in some ways it’s dangerous having this limit so low.

The second problem is connectivity. There don’t appear to be any connecting cycle paths at either end of the bridge so you need to bravely battle five to ten km of busy roads to get from one cycleway to the bridge.

But riding to the top of this bridge (twice) was a lot of fun for me. And I was impressed to see the importance that the state government has placed on putting infrastructure like this in place for cyclists.

I hope they build more!

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