Creating Space for Recreational Mountain Biking in the City of Sydney

Decision Maker: Council

Decision status: Recommendations Determined


Moved by Councillor Miller, seconded by the Chair (the Lord Mayor) –

It is resolved that:

(A)      Council note:

(i)         the City of Sydney Active Transport Survey 2021 revealed:

(a)       one in five (21 per cent) people surveyed cited the Covid-19 pandemic as a reason for riding a bicycle more often, and there was a growing interest in recreational rides compared to commuting to work or school/university;

(b)       the main reasons for more regular riding in the past two years were:

·               a desire to get healthy (58 per cent) and;

·               finding out about places and routes that were good to ride (52 per cent); and

(c)       the key reason why infrequent riders do not ride on a regular basis, is that it is too dangerous to ride on the road. More separation from car traffic and the road would encourage more riding in the City of Sydney;

(ii)        the City of Sydney Cycling Strategy and Action Plan (2018) includes the priorities to Connect the Network (Priority 1) and Support People to Ride (Priority 2). These priorities include a range of supporting actions. Those of specific relevance are;

(a)       1.13 Investigate opportunities for more children’s riding areas and learn to ride tracks;

(b)       2.2 Provide opportunities for people to build skills and capabilities; and

(c)       2.12 Support and work with others who are contributing to getting more people riding;

(iii)      the Sydney Park Plan of Management notes the desire for more park facilities including bike tracks. The Sydney Park Master Plan also proposes a playful, mounded landscape behind the Nursery Depot site with designated areas for bike-riders, skateboarders and rollerbladers;

(iv)      while the City continues to connect the cycling network, there is also a need to encourage more people of all ages to try riding, both in the city and the surrounding areas;

(v)       throughout the pandemic, there was a significant increase in the number of people utilising the City’s public parks and open spaces;

(vi)      specifically, there was high demand from children and teenagers in and around both Alexandria and Potts Point for more recreational biking opportunities. The demand has culminated in a petition with more than 500 signatures, calling for the City to transition the existing unapproved mountain bike and BMX ‘pump track’, jumps and loop, located on the Eastern side of Sydney Park, to something more permanent; and

(vii)     some of the informal mountain bike tracks located behind the Sydney Park café are causing environmental damage to the park’s bush regeneration areas;

(B)      the Chief Executive Officer be requested to:

(i)         investigate the feasibility of providing mountain bike/BMX track facilities, including pump tracks, loops and jumps within the local government area including:

(a)       ongoing temporary use of the former Euston Road depot site, the adjoining informal loop and additional ‘pump’ track for mountain bike/BMX bike use. This is to include signage and protection of bushland, and any potential scope for rider education on how to safely care for and use the track; and

(b)       closure and re-landscaping of the unapproved tracks causing environmental damage in Sydney Park located behind the café, and for these works to be implemented through community planting days involving the mountain bike/BMX community group;

(ii)        investigate options for locating a permanent mountain bike/BMX track facility at Sydney Park or another suitable location; and

(iii)      meet with members of the mountain bike/BMX community to provide input into the project feasibility of temporary and permanent facilities, as well as discuss how to best ensure the protection and care of vegetation; and

(C)      the Lord Mayor be requested to write to Minister for Planning and Public Spaces and Minister for Transport and Roads, Rob Stokes requesting that:

(i)         the remediation of the St Peters interchange site be expedited and appropriately resourced to allow for community use as agreed; and

(ii)        the Minister provide Council with an update on potential sites where temporary or ‘meanwhile use’ of NSW Government-owned land might be enabled for recreational mountain and BMX bike riding and/or to meet other community demands.

Carried unanimously.



Report author: Erin Cashman

Publication date: 15/11/2021

Date of decision: 15/11/2021

Decided at meeting: 15/11/2021 - Council

Accompanying Documents: