WalkSydney’s List of Aims

Wombat crossing at roundabout in Balmain Wombat crossing at roundabout in Balmain

WalkSydney has developed a preliminary list of aims that will help make Sydney more walkable. We expect these will evolve over time, but it is a good place to start:

  • Intersection Crossings
    • Provide legal pedestrian crossings at all movements.
    • Increase the use of Wombats (raised pedestrian crossings).
    • Implement Pedestrian phases as the default condition, so no beg button (pedestrian actuation) required.
    • Install Leading Pedestrian Intervals (LPI) at all intersections with pedestrians present.
    • Detect pedestrians automatically at all intersections (prioritise those with more pedestrians). Implement pedestrian detection technology (as used in Queensland and Victoria) that adjusts signal timing for people walking (shorter waiting times and longer time to cross the road).
  • Infrastructure
    • Provide active transport connections to destinations, existing local infrastructure, and known walking/riding routes on all major projects. Active transport infrastructure is always the first thing to be deleted from projects in cost-cutting. This short-sightedness has become evident within a few months after the opening of new infrastructure such as Inner West Light Rail.  
    • Reclassify roads to implement Movement and Place Framework. With the roll-out of new mass transport (metro & light rail) and new motorways throughout Sydney, a comprehensive revision of classified roads is needed in the context of the Sydney Green Grid, the movement and place framework in FTS 2056 and the District Plans and, subsequent revision of road funding mechanisms. Successful Places is one of the NSW Outcome Budgeting framework components.
    • Fund public domain works around schools to overturn the widespread practice of drive-to-school, delivered by local government (subject to many of the suggestions above especially training of traffic engineers)    
    • Fund network of protected bicycle lanes (not shared paths) for delivery by local government (subject to many of the suggestions above especially training of traffic engineers)  
  • Institutions
    • Remove the veto vote held by TfNSW (RMS) (and Police) on Local Traffic Committees
    • Remove political screening of the short-list for TfNSW (RMS) Walking and Cycling Programs (grants). Presently recommendations are made by staff, this list of recommendations is given to State MPs and the approved list can differ from the staff recommendations.
  • Instruct
    • Train local government traffic engineers and road safety officers on road designs to provide walkability.
    • Train TfNSW (RMS) traffic signals team about access by walking and bicycling . 
    • Train NSW Police on the NSW Road Rules as they apply to pedestrian access    
    • Enforce (in a continuous and highly visible way) the road rules (such as left-turn rule, etc). 
  • Implement Best Practices   
    • Revise TfNSW (RMS) Technical Directions for traffic devices such as Shared Zones, Continuous Footpath Treatments, etc.
    • Revise TfNSW (RMS) Traffic Signal Design Guide (it imposes restrictions that keep cars moving and reduces pedestrian access. Example. Old Canterbury Rd at Lewisham West light rail stop).
    • Revise TfNSW (RMS) supplements for Australian Standards and Austroads Guides which includes warrant for zebra crossings and slip lanes.
    • Revise NSW speed zones to ensure lower speeds can be implemented easily in the right locations. A 30 km/h speed limit should be the default in urban areas, and higher only in select locations.
    • Revise rail setback specifications so active transport corridors can be provided beside rail lines (where often there are existing service roads, etc).
    • Revise the Road Rules so that every intersection is by default a crosswalk, (i.e. the road crosses the footpath, rather than the footpath crossing the road), so it is clear to drivers that pedestrians have the right-of-way at unsignalised crossings.