Friday, 30 March 2012

Lighter Footprints Local Group swings in behind cycling’s “Missing Link”

Middle and Inner-east cyclists lack a bike friendly and safe cycling route through the ‘heart of Boroondara ‘. Of four significant radial routes in the Principal Bicycle Network (greater Melbourne), this route remains largely un-developed.
The Lighter Footprints Local Action group believes the time is right to remedy this lack of strategic action. We are joining with Bicycle User Groups and relevant local Council stakeholders to mount a concerted campaign to get the ‘missing link’ (Eastern rail trail) back on track.

If you would like to take part in planning and action on this campaign, please come along to a Lighter Footprints Local Group “Missing Link” Campaign Planning night
on Thursday evening 6.00 pm, 12th April at Elgin Inn (Hawthorn).
Please email:   for details.

A detailed proposal for the Eastern Rail Trail was prepared in June 1996 by the Cities of Boroondara and Whitehorse and the Department of Sport and Recreation Victoria. Such a pathway was planned in 1996 connecting the Yarra bike paths in Richmond to Hawthorn, Camberwell, Surrey Hills through to Box Hill to the east. While cyclists from Doncaster have a safe route to the City along the Eastern Freeway, Glen Iris and Malvern residents, the Gardiner Creek trail, commuters from Surrey Hills, Canterbury, Camberwell, Mont Albert, Balwyn and Hawthorn, lack a safe friendly cycling route to traverse the City of Boroondara.
The missing east-west bike route through Boroondara, now referred to as the “Hawthorn to Box Hill Trail” is not progressing. On-road route development is progressing slowly, but for most residents, schoolkids, and commuters this is too hazardous to be a viable alternative. The Hawthorn to Box Hill Trail or ‘missing link’ would be mainly off-road – utilising sections of the Box Hill to Hawthorn railway line easement where feasible.

The route would also provide an important link with the Box Hill to Ringwood bike trail that is currently in planning.
The Hawthorn to Box Hill Trail was previously identified as an important link in the Principle Bicycle Network for Melbourne. The route was specified as one of the four radial routes identified by the State Bicycle Committee to link the outer suburbs with the City. Unfortunately, this proposal has not been implemented to date.

The route has been very well documented on the links below:

East-West link information and map:

Project proposal and detailed maps:


Thursday, 29 March 2012

Local Actions Group priorities for 2012

The Local Actions Group met on 15 March and agreed the following 2012 Priorities:
  • Continue to liaise with Council Officers
  • Input to 2013-14 Council Budget
  • East-West Cycleway campaign
The next meeting of this working group will be held on Thursday 12 April 2012.
Please contact Jenny for further details.   

Sunday, 25 March 2012

Lighter Footprints stall at Kew Festival

Our active team of stall volunteers were busy again at the Kew Festival on Saturday 24 March, this time accompanied by a large thermometer and inflatable globe to highlight the issue of dangerous global warming.

We collected letters addressed to State Premier Ted Baillieu deploring Victoria's move to open up new mines to export brown coal to India. The state government was urged to turn its attention to renewable energy instead.

Lighter Footprints will run a renewable energy forum in May, which will include scrutiny of Victoria's performance, details of which will be announced soon on this website.

We also informed those who added their names to our fast growing email list that David Spratt, co-author of Climate Code Red, would be the guest speaker at our monthly meeting this Wednesday 28 March. David's informative website of the same name, which includes the latest scientific findings about climate change, can be found here (click here). His book, co-authored with Philip Sutton, can be obtained through good bookshops.

The public is welcome to attend David Spratt's talk. See the Events page of this website for details of our usual venue and starting time.

Tuesday, 20 March 2012

State National Action Group meeting 20 March

The State National Action Group met on 20 March 2012.
The meeting again focused on a proposed forum on renewable energy to be held in early May. Speakers are still to be finalised. We discussed the stall we will have at the Kew Festival on Saturday 24 March in Victoria Park, Adeney Avenue, Kew. We also initiated planning for our first politician visit of the year. Letter writing campaigns were also planned. We had a wide ranging discussion on renewable energy and the recent moves by the state government to expand coal mining in Victoria.
The next meeting of this working group will be held on Tuesday 3 April 2012.
Please contact Lynn for further details.

Tuesday, 13 March 2012

Climate Action Summit

Here is the poster for the upcoming Summit for climate action groups
to be held in Sydney on the last weekend of April.

The draft program is to be found on their website.
Please consider printing this poster and placing it on relevant notice boards.

Thursday, 1 March 2012

Ashburton Community Festival stall

With a hot northerly blowing and temperatures in the mid-thirties, Lighter Footprints was out and about on Sunday 26 February spreading the message about climate change at the Ashburton Community Festival.

This followed a similar effort at the Sustainable Living Festival in Auburn Rd, Hawthorn on the previous Saturday. Hundreds of leaflets were handed out at the two events, with more than 70 new people added to our email list.

The most gratifying experience was coming across people delighted to find there was a local climate action group in their area. We hope to see some enthusiastic new faces at our monthly meetings.

We used both occasions to alert the local community to our Renewable Energy Forum which will be held later this year. Details will be posted on this website once date, venue and speakers are confirmed.