Shared Path Network  

The Shire manages a large network of shared paths with both the Wongan Hills and Ballidu townsites. The upgrading of this network is guided by two important Council adopted strategic documents, the Bike Plan and the 10 Year Foothpath Plan.

In 2015, the Bike Plan has been prepared with the overall aim of making cycling (and walking) safer and more convenient within the townsites of Wongan Hills and Ballidu – the two main towns of the Shire of Wongan-Ballidu. The Plan is predominantly focused on the (off-road) cycling/walking path network as the Shire of Wongan-Ballidu believes this is the most effective means of improving cycling conditions for the population of the towns. Therefore improving the existing path network have been the principal aim of the Plan.

The Plan also identifies hazards, barriers and obstacles to cycling, and proposes the means by which these can be reduced or eliminated. It is anticipated that, when implemented, the upgraded cycling network will result in a significant increase in the number of local trips by bicycle (as well as improved pedestrian facilities). 

The townsite of Wongan Hills already has a road and path network very conducive to cycling. The town is compact and most destinations are easily accessed by a short bicycle ride. The town is reasonably flat with gentle gradients. Many of the roads are wide, and some divided with wide medians. These attributes, coupled with the generally low traffic volumes, means the roads are already very suitable for cycling with little or no improvements warranted.

Over the years, Council and staff have prioritised this project resulting in an extensive path network for both towns.

Despite these obvious advantages, more can and should be done to encourage more local trips to be made by bicycle or walking.

in 2015, less than 20% of school children rode bikes, walked or rode scooters to the schools in each town. An improved path network, and improved bicycle parking at the schools, would encourage more students (possibly with their parents) to ride.

The focus of the Plan, as reflected in the scope of works, is to prioritise the path development program. This is where it is expected that greater levels of cycling and walking will be achieved.

Provision of additional paths will serve a wide range of users (including cyclists, pedestrians, small wheeled vehicles such as gophers and scooters and parents pushing prams etc).

Read the Shire of Wongan-Ballidu Bike Plan here: https://www.wongan.wa.gov.au/documents/183/shire-of-wongan-ballidu-bike-plan 

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