The City of Sydney councillors have unanimously supported the growth of mountain bike and BMX riding in the inner-city.
A motion tabled by Cr Jess Miller in November requested the City’s CEO to “investigate the feasibility” of a mountain bike and BMX track facilities within the local government area, exploring options for a permanent facility in Sydney Park or another location and consult with members of the mountain bike and BMX community to provide input for the project.
“This is just about acknowledging how popular mountain biking and BMX biking is,” Cr Miller said at a November council meeting.
“How great it is for kids to be able to hone their technical skills on bikes away from traffic so they can build their confidence for riding on the road [and] how wonderful it is for these kids to do something which doesn’t involve sitting in front of a screen.”
The motion has also requested that Lord Mayor Clover Moore writes to the Minister for Planning and Public Spaces and the Minister for Transport and Roads Rob Stokes to provide an update on potential temporary or ‘meanwhile use’ State-owned sites that could be enabled for mountain bike or BMX riding.
“It’s really nice for city kids to have access to that bush-like environment,” Lord Mayor Moore said.
“That informality and opportunity should be there for the kids because I think living in the city and yet have that experience that you’d only expect living out in the bush or in the suburbs, I think it’s just quite fantastic.”
Non-profit Pedal Camp, which described the motion as a “pretty historic moment”, has created a track at Sydney Park which Lord Mayor Moore likened to “the bush that I played in as a child” on Sydney’s Upper North Shore.
“We’ve got the skate parks and the bike opportunities in other areas of Sydney Park, but this is more natural, the kids building it and getting dirt up their nails,” she said. “It’s really nice for the kids as they probably wouldn’t expect to [have this] in a city environment.”
Cr Linda Scott was equally supportive of the motion.
“It’s been lovely to see how everyone has been really creative about using our outdoor space around the COVID period,” she said. “I saw the track when it was in action having walked around that park almost every day with my kids, so it’s a lovely thing.”
Queensland native Logan Martin won the inaugural Men’s BMX Freestyle event at the Tokyo Olympic Games this year, an occasion that Cr Scott hopes has inspired the growth of mountain or BMX riding in the inner-city.
All councillors voted in favour of the motion and was hence carried unanimously.