Thanks for a great program, Di! Cyclists should definitely be separated from the dangers of fast-moving highway traffic but, as several of your speakers pointed out, junctions are the key to cycleway design. Minimising and carefully designing intersections are the keys to any system of segregated cycleways - the analogy with a motorway system is obvious. A bike path with more than one or two unsignalised crossings per kilometre is inherently dangerous and should not be called a cycleway. Niels Tørsløv (Traffic Director of Copenhagen) explained during his recent Australian lecture tour that the introduction of new infrastructure such as "green cycle routes" as alternatives to segregated on-road "Copenhagen lanes" has dramatically reduced the number of cyclists killed and injured in Copenhagen since 2005.
Sadly, the City of Sydney Council is in the processs of re-inventing the wheel by spending around $70 million shoehorning variants of the old and dangerous "Copenhagen lanes" into inner-city streets, where cyclists will have to negotiate unsignalised intersections and driveways every few seconds.
It is depressing to see political spin describing these dangerous bike lanes as "safe cycleways" in an effort to persuade naive non-cyclists to buy bikes.
Copenhagen's bike infrastructure guidelines, and a very large body of other European accident statistics and design guidelines, advise against this sort of cycle track on relatively quiet and slow residential streets such as Bourke Street, Surry Hills. Inner-city cyclists and pedestrians are almost certainly safer under current arrangements.