The RACWA has recently released a report on spending on cycling infrastructure and the economic benefits of cycling. The report can be found here (summary here: here). The report states that investment in good quality and safe cycling infrastructure returns around 3.4 times the cost of that infrastructure. In contrast, public transport is 1.8 times and a motor vehicle is 1 times.
It simply drives home what most of us have known for a long time. The big item there is their recommendation to maintain a rolling cycling infrastructure budget of $25M/yr (2010 dollars). Adelaide, being a similar size, would be on the same footing.
I was in WA during July last year, and used many of their cycleways, including the 68 km long dual lane cycleway from Perth to Mandurah - - though apart from that one, I still prefer riding on the road.
To start we're going to need a bit more than $25M/yr if we are to start building infrastructure according to international best practices (eg proven methods in the Netherlands). At least until the infrastructure reaches a high standard.
To put things in perspective, we're spending $800 million on the South Road/Grand Junction Road overpass!
Imagine what kind of cycling infrastructure we could have built with that money!
An option to:
-- excel (install excellent cycling infrastructure through out Adelaide that would encourage cycling and decrease road congestion plus pollution with associated health costs and climate change)
-- or do something badly (improve for drivers a very short section of a long road, then drivers complain).
And what did the govt choose?