IWBC asked the Council for a breakdown of the bicycle budget for 2020/21 and following years. Council replied promptly and the amounts are substantial, particularly compared to only a few years ago.
Cathy Edwards-Davis provided the attached spreadsheet . $6.005M is committed to bicycle works in the current financial year (20/21). These are gross figures and some of these have been partly funded by grants from TfNSW/RMS. Most of those items were for Leichhardt and Marrickville projects that were in their bike plans. In addition there was an announcement in Inner West Newsletter that 2020-21 would have a total footpaths and cycleways budget of $23.7M.
Some of the funds were from developer contributions. There were also funds from the State Goverment for the Parramatta Urban Improvement Project and for the Greenway. (Council has matched the State Govt funding on the Greenway).
A further update on this were two items that are to be included as a result of TfNSW responses to Covid. These were:
1. Fast tracking part of the already approved Summer Hill to Newtown cycleway as a “pop-up” cycleway,
2. Stage 1 of the Livingstone Rd cycleway from Albermarle St to Marrickville Park (this was to be funded solely by IWC as part of LR03).
Neil Tonkin provided the folowing comment:
As you know the former Ashfield Council had a sorry history of not formally providing for cycle facilities and hence not even having plans in place, should funding opportunities arise. The budget reflects this deficiency. At all our communications with IWC we have stressed that we expect Ashfield to be brought up to speed with the rest of the municipality. The staff are painfully aware of these deficiencies. All I can say is the merger has not been easy for the new council, they claim a significant capital budget deficiency. They have at least determined to complete ’legacy’ projects that were included in the former Leichhardt and Marrickville bike plans. That is why the new bicycle strategy being prepared by Council is so important and the route suggestions made by us for Ashfield.