_SWANSTON STREET REDEVELOPMENT: CYCLISTS AND PEDESTRIANS
The first tram stop redevelopment on Swanston Street outside the State Library has now been completed with others to be constructed at RMIT University, Bourke Street Mall and City Square.
As shown in the image below the tram stop has a raised platform that allows for access to trams for people of all abilities. Additionally, each tram stop will feature bluestone paving and new street furniture. The tram stop area also contains banded paving to signify priority cyclist movements.
As a cyclist who uses Swanston Street to commute to work, I was forced to a stop (despite there being no trams present) as pedestrians were walking in the bike lane. As shown in the image below people have been employed to instruct pedestrians to remain clear of the bike lane until a tram has arrived. Clearly these people won’t be policing pedestrians forever, but at the same time cyclists have to be aware they are entering a shared environment, travel at a reduced speed and be vigilant.
Undoubtedly the redevelopment, which will eventually remove all cars, will contribute to beautifying Swanston Street and reinstating it as a Melbourne premier boulevard. At this stage however, it is difficult to know whether the new tram stops will increase or lessen conflict between cyclists and pedestrians. Perhaps it is too early to tell!