The State Government and South Australian city councils will dismantle all of the state’s cycling infrastructure in 20 years’ time, it has been revealed.
In a move described as “future proofing SA for coming generations” the decision was made after several studies into the matter concluded it would “be in the grand tradition of South Australian infrastructure planning”.
“Once the system is up and running and servicing everyone’s needs in an efficient manner, we’re going to tear it up,” said the Transport Minister Stephen Mullighan at a press conference on Frome Street. “While we know that bikes and cycling are popular now, it’s really just a fad that we think people will get tired of it in a few years’ time, so, yeah, in the bin.”
The cycling infrastructure, including bike lanes, sensors, signage, crossings, and parking spaces, has taken decades and millions of ratepayer’s dollars to complete as cycling’s popularity has increased. Further money spent on awareness campaigns and legislative changes also numbers in the millions of dollars.
“The councils are on board too,” the Minister said. “They’ve spent big over the past few years, commissioning studies, installing the network of bike paths and nurturing a culture of safety around cyclists. Once we get done with the last push of fully linking up the system and making sure motorists are aware of bikes on the road, we’ll just tear it all up and lay down some bitumen.”
City of Adelaide Councillor Anne Moran supports the plan, saying it’s “a sensible solution for an age-old problem.” City of Adelaide CEO Mark Goldstone agrees, and tells The Adelaide Review, “That’s what they’ve decided, so we’ll finish up our master plan and rip the thing up, I guess.”
Asked what the next step will be once the extensive network has been fully established and subsequently demolished, Mullighan explained that the councils and state government will start building a new cycling network 30 years down the line at a considerably larger relative cost to the taxpayer.
“We expect that people might want to use bikes again, even hoverboards maybe, a bit later on in the century,” says Mullighan. “These things come in cycles, you know, so we just have to be ready. It worked with the trams.”