“On a bike, being just slightly above pedestrian and car eye level, one gets a perfect view of the goings-on in one’s own town”. David Byrne
Bicycles are a convenient, healthy and environmentally friendly mean of transport and as David Byrne, lead singer of the Talking Heads says in his book Bicycle Diaries they’re ideal to get a perfect view of your own town. As a bicycle rider myself I think the ideal standpoint of a bicycle has to do with the 360 degrees view, the perfect speed and/or the sense of freedom and control these vehicles grant you.
Whatever the reason, I believe learning about routes, lanes and regulations in Brunswick might make this daily event more enjoyable for everyone. I’ve taken a deep dive into a few websites to find these three pieces of information I presume will make your and others’ ride more pleasant.
- Where to ride. In Brunswick and Moreland there are plenty of paths to ride. Sydney Road or Lygon Street can get a bit hectic and overwhelming at times. Check out this colour-coded map to find “Off Road Path”, “Protected Lanes”, “Marked on Road Lanes” and “ Recommended On Road Route (No Infrastructure)”.
- Dooring. Sometimes you can’t avoid the main roads and these are packed with cars both in motion or parked. Opening doors of parked cars can be dangerous (between 2014-2019 there were 726 car dooring crashes in Victoria). Here are some tips for riders and drivers:
- Know the rule (Riders and drivers): Victorian Road Safety Road Rules states it is an offence to cause a hazard to a person or a vehicle by opening a car door, leaving a door of a vehicle open, or getting off, or out of a vehicle. The current fine is $413AUD. Drivers might hold more responsibility but riders please pay attention too!
- Keep your distance (Drivers). Since April 26 2021, drivers are required to leave at least one metre when passing a cyclist in speed zones 60kmh or lower, and 1.5 metres when passing at speed limits over 60kmh.
- Left turning vehicles (Riders). If a car is indicating to turn left, ride in the traffic lane behind the turning vehicle.
- Long Bike trails in Brunswick. We’re very fortunate to have three bicycle-friendly trails in Brunswick.
- The Merri Creek Trail. A lockdown favourite destination for locals, this trail runs for 21km connecting various suburbs and passing through cool places like CERES, Brunswick Velodrome and the Coburg Lake Reserve.
- Moonee Ponds Creek Trail. Not as green as the Merri but longer (25km long) and (probably) faster to ride. This trail runs from north to south (and vice versa) and it’s also a great option to explore.
- Capital City Trail. This trail is a 29km long circuit that loops around the city centre. Its northern section runs through Brunswick and it’s fun to ride along if you’re looking for long distances and constant changes of scenarios.
Now you know a little bit more about where to cycle and how to do it safely. So grab your bike, be safe and explore Brunswick and Melbourne on your bike.