02 August, 2018

Pedestrians in Sydney CBD

A liveable city is one that supports active transport. Being able to walk or cycle safely in your city is not only a cheap and effective way to move around, but also provides a myriad of health, social and environmental benefits.

Our city is changing and the way the transport network performs is also changing. There are more people in the city than ever – either working, visiting or living and Opal data is showing us that more people than ever are choosing public transport over driving.
So how do we support active travel in our city and what can be done day to day to improve the experience of our customers travelling into and through the city?  
Transport for NSW has done several projects in the heart of the CBD over the last few years that has given pedestrians more reasons to choose walking as a form of transport – here are just a few examples.
In December last year, George Street (between King and Park Streets) was opened to pedestrians and the space allowed for more shoppers and Christmas activities. The space truly came alive with lots of shoppers stopping for a selfie on the iconic stretch of Sydney city’s road network. The space has continued to be popular with Sydneysiders and visitors and has provided the city with a great space for the community.
We’ve built the award winning Wynyard Walk which allows pedestrians to access Barangaroo in six minutes from Wynyard Station and has the capacity for 20,000 people to move through it each hour.
We created Travel Choices. Our Travel Choices program has helped more than 660 organisations in the city centre and reached more than 176,000 customers and provides support to customers to change their travel behaviours and consider alternative ways to move around, such as remoding onto alternate commuting methods other than driving that provide healthier, faster, and more sustainable options such as walking and cycling, jumping off a stop early and walking to their destination and retiming their journey to outside the peak.
And, we’ve undertaken smaller but no less important projects with the Centre for Road Safety and Roads and Maritime Services,  such as reducing the pedestrian wait time across the traffic signal network in the city.
Earlier this year, we commenced a trial and introduced shorter wait times for pedestrians crossing at traffic signals giving pedestrians more frequent crossing opportunities in the city.
The shorter wait times for pedestrians crossing at traffic signals in the busiest parts of the CBD has helped to keep pedestrians moving and could potentially reduce the risk of pedestrian crashes. Importantly 90 per cent of trips made in the heart are by foot, and with shorter wait time we are making walking across the city even more easier.
In 2016, we expanded the speed limit of 40km/h to a much larger part of the CBD to further improve pedestrian safety and cyclist safety. A pedestrian who is hit at 40km/h has double the chance of survival than if they were hit at a 50km/h.
In 2014, we introduced a trial of new intersection signals at six busy Sydney CBD intersections to improve road safety. The pedestrian countdown timers provided information to enable pedestrians to better judge how much time they have to cross the road. The timers appear after the green signal phase and display the number of seconds pedestrians have to cross a road before the red “don’t walk” signal appears.
Due to the success of the trial, an additional 29 countdown times are being rolled out at busy intersections across the state.

When combined, these initiatives help to encourage active transport while balancing the travel needs of all people, particularly travelling into the CBD, and play an important role in creating a truly integrated network.



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