There are many challenges facing metropolitan and regional Councils in encouraging people out of their cars to walk, wheel, or ride to work and play instead.
This Active Mobility plenary session looked at successful case studies where Local and State Governments have built active mobility infrastructure and run behaviour-change programs to get their communities moving.
Session attendees heard from Department of Transport Director of Active Transport Safety Michelle Prior, Tim Judd, and Phil Jones from PJA Consulting, Mayor Mark Irwin from the City of Stirling, and Lord Mayor Basil Zempilas from the City of Perth.
Prior commenced the session by highlighting the key strategies in place to encourage and facilitate active mobility across the State, and the funding available to Local Governments who had ideas to increase active mobility they were looking to develop.
See Michelle Prior’s Presentation
Tim Judd and Phil Jones then showed examples with case studies from the United Kingdom, showing the process from overarching strategy, implementation, and the reality of creating communities that are built to encourage and facilitate active mobility – joining towns together through accessible and connected paths, trails, and networks.
They also showed an example of a planning structure that would assist with those utilising footpaths and how road design can impact how people use paths. They highlighted how small changes in planning stages can encourage active mobility in an area.
See Phil Jones’ Presentation
Mayor Mark Irwin from the City of Stirling brought the examples of active mobility in action closer to home with examples from the City of Stirling.
This included the trial scooter program and the learnings that came from that, road networks where bikes, pedestrians and their safety take precedence over cars. Some stand out advice from Mark was “If you put the word trial after something, you can do anything..”
The Mayor also revealed Stirling’s plan for a trackless tram. This concept that is intended to provide an alternative to commuters that minimises the number of cars on the road and uses its own path dissimilar to roads, and thus does not get stuck in traffic or behind traffic lights. The tram has been sourced from China and will be trialled at a new car park opposite the Council offices.
See Mayor Mark Irwin’s Presentation
Lord Mayor of the City of Perth Basil Zempilas rounded out the speakers by advocating on behalf of active mobility and confirming that when residents are given no other option than to be actively mobile, they will find a way. In his charismatic style, Basil noted ethe example of Optus Stadium and the ability of WA to utilise, trains, buses, and other available services to get to and from the footy, concerts, and any other events hosted at the Stadium.
These examples showed firsthand, Western Australian-based applications of active mobility to delegates.
The session was finalised with a panel discussion with all speakers, where the common message was the best way to get started – is to get started!
Work with local business and in early stages of planning to ensure active mobility is at the front of mind when designing new areas, provide incentives to using car alternatives and put the time into trialling different methods and seeing what works best for your community.
Attendees were encouraged to look towards their own Cities, Towns, and Shires to highlight small and achievable ways they could implement active mobility to their area, doing their bit to join the active and mobile revolution.
All the presenters were in accord, that the changing the behaviour of active mobility users and providers, is as important as the building of the infrastructure.