Wheel opportunity

Wheel opportunity

Congratulations to Lismore Council for embarking on a cycleway strategy (Council to spend $4.4 million on cycleways, Echo, Feb 21). Now if only some enterprising soul will start up a Bicycle Hire shop. The once-a-day bus trip from Nimbin to Lismore is appreciated but the only consolation for the five-hour wait for the return journey (with some exceptions) is that it takes just about all day to walk from one end of Lismore (say Bunnings) to the other end (say Lismore Square). $10 a day would be more than worth it to get around town for the day to get more done. And then theres the tourists. Anyone?

Peter Godden

Nimbin

Top marks

Congratulations Council on the first stage of the Lismore cycleways project.

As a zero-emission, petrol-free and healthy form of transport and recreation, cycling can provide help with rising petrol costs and Lismores chronic traffic and parking problems.

The observation by one councilor that there are no bikes in town highlights the need for this sort of initiative to make it safe and secure for cyclists as it is in surrounding shires and all major cities.

Julie Parker

McLeans Ridges

Time to pay up

Iwould like to comment on the remarks made by Cr John Hampton regarding the proposed cycleway plan for Lismore. Cr Hampton suggested the project was a complete waste of money and that Council should provide a $100 prize to anyone who even saw a bicyclist in town.

These are the comments of a man completely ignorant of the truth. I am part of a social group of cyclists that has been meeting every weekend for the past 25 years in downtown Lismore for our morning ride with an average group of six riders. As well as our group, there are the Northern Rivers Peddlers who meet each weekend, and several other social groups. So if Cr Hampton wants to pay $100 for every time Ive seen a cyclist in town, I reckon he owes me around $100,000. Ill be in touch, John.

Also, the reason he doesnt see too many families cycling is that there is nowhere for them to ride. Pretty simple, provide some cycleways and watch them come out, they just need to be in the right places, such as along the riverbanks so people can enjoy the scenery away from the cars. Encouraging children to get out on their bikes and ride can only be a good thing cant it John?, The roads are too busy and, in a lot of cases, too rough for most people to ride on.

So John, contact one of the social groups and go for a ride, it would do you the world of good, in more ways than one.

Peter Fairfull

Lismore

Not happy, John

I find itquite disturbing that one of Lismores City Councillors representatives we elect to show positive community leadership would express such a regressive attitude towards public transport. Cr John Hampton seems to believe there is no need to fund infrastructure for cyclists in Lismore because he never sees any. Hmmmmm.

Perhaps Cr Hampton should roll down the window ofthe petrol-driven vehicle he travels in, and actually take a lookoutside his own small, fuel-injected world.

Going from East Lismore to the CBD recently I observed at least six adult cyclists in just five minutes. Unfortunately, most were anxiously looking over their shoulders to avoid being squeezed off the road by oncoming traffic cars driven, no doubt, by people like Cr Hampton, who didnt care to notice that the cyclists were there.

People do use bicycles for transport and many more will do so as Lismore roads become safer for cyclists.

During that same five minutes I counted more than 20 cars being driven by people who looked decidedly overweight. Quite apart from the environment costs of our dependency on petrol-driven vehicles, we owe it to ourselves and our children to consider the health costs this reliance creates.

There is growing awareness of the dangers of continuing our exorbitant use of fossil fuels. Choosing a bicycle for transport allows individuals to actively minimise global warming and increase personal quality of life. But without car-free lanes to cycle in, this option can not be exercised (pun unintended, but there it is).

Provision of a safe and comprehensive network of cycleways in the Lismore area is not just some recreational frill. It is the only morally responsible course of action a far-sighted Council can take and one that is long overdue.

Margaret Louise

Lismore

Learn the rules

Three cheers LCC on finally doing something to make riding a bike much safer. Now all we need is to teach both cyclists and drivers rules for bike riding. I would like to claim Cr Hamptons suggested prizemoney of $100. I have ridden to work in the Lismore CBD for the past 10 years.

As a ratepayer maybe we should put up a prize of $1000 to any councillor seen in the CBD doing something. Cr Hampton get down town and look how many of us ride around. Last Thursday I passed five other cyclists from the Gollan Pub to Oakes Oval. The price of fuel is getting more expensive, which will mean more and more will start to ride.

Michael Wawn

Lismore

Display needed

I commend Lismore City Council for committing $4.4 million to the construction of cycleways. If these cycleways supply practical and direct routes they will be used by both existing and many new cyclists who will be encouraged to ride because they can now ride in safety. If the cycleways follow indirect and impractical scenic routes they will not be utilised by either new or existing riders. Unfortunately we have no idea if the planned cycleways will supply practical and direct routes since council has chosen not to exhibit the plans. Given the statements attributed in The Echo to Lismore City Council General Manager Paul OSullivan that it would be wrong to place (the plans) on exhibition because the money has already been allocated as part of the budget, I have no confidence that the design will meet the needs of the community and we will be left with a white elephant.

It is wrong to spend $4.4 million of the communitys funds without first putting the plans on display. It is one thing to consult interest groups, it is another to interpret and translate their input into something that actually meets their needs.

Dan Waters

Goonellabah Edited for length

No action

I am wondering if Lismore City Council can explain why it is in the habit of putting forward ideas to promote visitors and tourism to the region then let go of them altogether. We, the public, are excited then left wondering what the council is doing and asking why they were dropped.

In 2001 there was a proposal to restore the wharves on Wilsons River but nothing has happened. Sadly, we have lost one of the old wharves as it was washed away by flooding and the other remaining 1890s wharves have almost decayed to the point of complete disrepair.

Thank god we still have the Lantern Parade because Council stupidly let go of the Herb Festival, citing cost, ignoring the fact the Herb Festival drew thousands of people to Heritage Park and to our country city. We have many writers, artists, foodies, musicians and poets living in Lismore whose skills are not being utilised by Council in the promotion of our town. Local business people, artists and creative people need all the support they can get from Council. In truth they have had far too little for far too long and that is a disgrace.

Helen Coyle

South Lismore Edited for length

No-name shame

I am surprised at The Echo letting bleating Christians have their say whilstthey donteven have the guts (or courage of their convictions)to put a name to their tripe.

I have noticed a surge of religiosity in the media from commercial television through to ABC Radio National and our local print media and can only think it is part of the build-up to the Catholic youth fest with the Pope later in the year.

Getting on the bandwagon with that sort of nonsense does The Echo no credit whatsoever.

Geoff Allan

Tuntable Creek

Letter writers should be aware the policy of The Echo is to give priority to letters of fewer than 200 words with a name and suburb. In rare cases where discretion is warranted we will publish letters without names Ed.

No religion

I am glad to inform Michelle Walker (Echo, Feb 21) that my life has been undeservedly blessed, but what I do suffer from, unlike the god of the bible, is such empathy for human suffering that I would end it if I could. Michelle has read a different bible to me if she gives satan the power to overrule gods wishes or does she admire a god who lets his subordinate fallen angel destroy peoples lives and then doesnt ameliorate the pain? I am happy to judge god inherently evil as well as racist, why else supposedly give his chosen mana when they are hungry in the desert, but leave the ethiopians with nothing but the desert sand to fill their stomachs?I wish I didnt have to be rude by pointing out the illogicalities and idiocy of any monotheistic belief, in the same way I can ignore UFO abductees, flat-earthers and John Edwards fans, but this outdated belief in judaeo-christian nonsense still negatively impacts policy regarding gay rights, birthcontrol, immigration and, worst of all, the Middle East. Ross Macdonald

Nimbin Edited for length

Roundabouts

N Nyistor is right about landscaped roundabouts impeding vision to the detriment of traffic safety (Echo, Feb 21) but he may as well forget it .R

eferring to Ballinas roundabouts (which are not as bad as Lismores), I decided to raise a similar point with one of Ballina Councillors. He projects himself as a clear, no nonsence thinker, so I thought I had a chance of getting some sense applied to the subject.

The reply I got was even more ridiculous than yours.

Whether bureaucrat or councillor, they havent realised apparently, that the proposition theyre promoting is that the less you can see of the traffic around you, the better decisions you will make interacting with it.

Jim Cross

Ballina

Shame on Robbo

Thanks to Media Watch, I have been alerted to Robbos (Clive Robertsons) views on rape, which he has aired. He claims both parties are guilty. He gives as an illustration, a girl in a red dress crossing a bulls paddock, against advice. When the bull attacks, he says she gets what she deserves. This is an excellent analogy. A good many men are beastly and animal-like and behave like bulls.

I was 60 and dressed as a woman of my age should, when a 16-year-old demanded sex. When I refused, he tried to rape me and then tried to kill me. Where was my guilt? I have been blithely feeling guilt free. Perhaps Robbo would like me to start feeling guilty?

I say rape is entirely a mans fault. Women are certainly not to blame if a man is out of control. Robbo is echoing the excuse of the male who cannot control his sexual urges and needs to blame someone else. It cannot possibly be his fault. Men have used this excuse for far too long. And insidiously they have threatened women who speak up by saying they will retaliate. It has to stop. I call on all abused women to call their bluff. To speak up and lets see if they retaliate. Women have been downtrodden and treated like dirt for too long. It is time.

Laura Henkel

Goonellabah

Pure rubbish

Pity the poor residents of McLeans Ridges. Council has agreed to re-exhibit the rezoning proposal for Camerons Rd that knowingly contains inaccurate information and completely mis-states the nature of the rural community impacted by this development (Flawed proposal on show; Echo, Feb 14).

Councils logic: put the plan on public exhibition and the public will tell us whats wrong with it. Trouble is the community has already shown Council it is wrong and they have been ignored yet again.

Noel Parker

McLeans Ridges


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