Back into the limbo for Melbourne’s narrowest bicycle lanes is this sequence of on road bicycle lanes found along Rathdowne Street. Workers here disregarding the 1100mm wide Bicycle stencil when marking the 900mm (35 inches) wide Bicycle lane squeezed beside a left turn lane of 2400mm (8 foot) width, Austroads recommending 3000mm and a minimum of 2800mm for the adjacent lane while the Bicycle lane is recommended to be 1500mm with a minimum of 1200mm.
This unnecessary squeezing of vehicles into insufficient spaces would surely place some liability with the council for constructing such a disaster.
Heading North onto Rathdowne Street from Exhibition Street the kerbside Bicycle lane manages a width of 760mm (30 inches) from the makings to the edge of the unevenly cobbled gutter, to keep the adjacent lane to just on the minimum. Returning back through the intersection now heading south is this very recent addition to the intimidating infrastructure.
Too narrow to even fit the miniature 800mm wide bicycle stencil for bicycle paths (though they put one in anyway) this lane carries through between two 2400mm (8 foot) undersized lanes at an astonishing 590mm (23 inches) less than half the minimum width mandated by Austroads and Vicroads yet it is used in the middle of the road with no possible escape for cyclists. Noting the separated left turn signals allowing vehicles to pass by underneath waiting cyclists, after they have first crossed the Bicycle lane into the left turning line of traffic. Encouraging vehicles to pass each other in such reduced lanes while one or more of the lanes is likely stopped continues to push the limits of Melbourne’s unbelievably bad infrastructure, not just lacking or outdated, bad by present design.