The trial was kicked off by Kingston Council in mid 2010. It was not until November, after intervention from the state Government did Bayside council finally follow suit. The trial officially finished in November last year however, as it’s effectiveness had not been assessed it was decided that the “treatment” remain in place until such time as it had been thoroughly evaluated.
The evaluation has not yet been completed, an official report is due in May. Latest reports indicate that the trial has been a resounding success. Last week both Bayside & Kingston Councils report that whilst residents are not necessarily happy with the No Stopping Zones they have received no complaints.
At this stage they can only go on anecdotal evidence provided by interested stakeholders such as Vicroads, Cycling Victoria and local Police. The update centred on a detailed crash study conducted by Dr James Taylor of Sandy Hospital in conjunction with Monash Uni & Alfred Hospital. Needless to say the study reveals that during the no stopping times there have been no reported incidents of cyclists running into parked cars…DER you might say. However this is an important point.
Parked car accidents, whilst not large in number were a regular feature of traffic incidents on Saturday & Sunday mornings. This has now been eradicated which has to mean that fewer people are being injured. Other anecdotal evidence is that there is far less aggression between cars & cyclists than in the past. This has been attributed to more freely flowing cycling traffic. Truck drivers are even reporting improved conditions. An improvement in cyclists’ general behaviour has also been noted.
All of this bodes well for the “trial” to become permanent however this cannot be guaranteed until later this year. Over the longer term Bayside, Kingston & Port Phillip Councils have agreed to work together to prepare a proposal for a business case review the speed limit on Beach Rd (that would be good) and the extension of the Truck ban to Saturday mornings. Both of these improvements however will be a fair way off I imagine.