Maybe it’s the traffic congestion, the state of public transport, or just a desire for better health and fitness, but all over Brisbane, drivers are ditching the car and heading to bike shops to give cycling a try. Here are five reasons why the River City is Australia’s most bike friendly city
From inner city paths to glorious treks through nature, Brisbane has a huge variety of bikeways for riders to tackle. For inner city riders there’s paths either side of the Brisbane River, while weekend warriors can take a scenic cycle though wetlands and bush thanks to the Jim Soorley Bikeway connecting the Moreton Bay and Kedron Brook Cycleways.
If you’re confined to the suburbs, you’ll find maps of bikeways in Brisbane’s north, east, south east and south west, as well as Ipswich, on the Brisbane City Council website.
New laws aimed at improved the safety of cyclists came into effect in Queensland this year. When passing cyclists on the road, motorists are required to leave a gap of 1 metre when travelling under 60 kilometres an hour, and 1.5 metres when travelling over 60 kilometres an hour. Drivers caught breaking this law will be fined $330 and lose three demerit points.
The law was introduced following a parliamentary inquiry and seems to be working, with many Brisbane cyclists reporting that drivers are complying with the new laws.
CityCycle Bike Hire
CityCycle is a bike sharing initiative, with 150 bicycle docking stations around the city centre. Riders can hire a bike any time of the day or night. The hire fees are charge in half hour increments and, with the first half hour free, you can enjoy free all day bike hire by returning your bike to a docking station every half hour. Bike laws still apply and as many bikes don’t come with helmets, riders must provide their own. While the CityCycle scheme may not be the most popular Brisbane City Council initiative to ever hit the streets, all that means is that you’re guaranteed to get a bike when you want one!
Queensland is only one of a handful of Australian states and territories that allows its cyclists to ride on the footpath. This allows cyclists to leave the road when it is dangerous or impractical to keep riding on it. Very handy.
Cloudless, blue sky days make for excellent biking weather – in the middle of winter, at least (try to remember that on muggy summer days!)
If you’d like to make the switch from motorist to cyclist, head in to Hoffy Cycle bike shop at 10 Bowser Pde Sandgate for a wide range and expert advice.