But opposition leader Jared Cassidy said the council had “blown the perfect opportunity” to install the lanes during the COVID-19 shutdown, when there was minimal traffic on the roads.
“Works should have been done during the COVID-19 lockdown when city streets were all but empty,” Cr Cassidy said.
“CBD traffic is now almost back to pre-COVID levels and there are still CBD streets without safe bike lanes.
“The ‘pop-up’ bike lanes are called ‘pop-up’ for a reason: they are relatively cheap and quick to install. Why has nothing been done?”
Public and active transport committee chairman Ryan Murphy (Chandler) said the council was “currently designing a trial of safe and connected bi-directional bike lanes through the CBD”.
“We know cyclists are keen to see this happen soon, but these are very significant changes to roads right in the heart of the CBD,” Cr Murphy said.
“We want to get this initiative right and we’re not going to put this project at risk by rushing it. Making sure these designs are safe for cyclists is critical.”
Peak body Bicycle Queensland and other cycling lobby groups including Space For Cycling Brisbane have also called for pop-up bike lanes, with Bicycle Queensland putting forward an entire proposal on how it could work.
Cr Murphy said draft plans were presented to bicycle user groups at the first joint state and council active transport committee meeting earlier in the month.
“We are currently reviewing the technical feedback from these groups, and finalising a decision on whether bike lanes will go on the upstream or downstream side of Victoria Bridge as part of its conversion to a green bridge for Brisbane Metro,” he said.
“Bicycle user groups (BUGs) met with the Brisbane Metro project team on Thursday to give feedback on this decision, which must be finalised before the CBD bike lane design can progress to construction.”
The council allocated $58 million to major cycleway projects in the 2020-21 budget, including completing the Indooroopilly Riverwalk, and $16.6 million to smaller CBD-focused projects to make it “more pedestrian and cycling friendly”, Cr Schrinner said in his budget speech.
During the initial lockdowns in March and April, Sydney and Melbourne both announced the installation of kilometres of pop-up cycleways.
Melbourne lord mayor Sally Capp in early May announced 12 kilometres of pop-up bike lanes, removing car parks on streets to improve pedestrian access as well.
Pop-up bike lanes in Sydney, were also arranged by the state government in early May, with the “urgency” of the situation preventing immediate consultation with residents on suburban lanes that removed car parking.
“If other cities can roll out these pop-up lanes in a few weeks, why has it taken Adrian Schrinner so long to do nothing?” Cr Cassidy said.
Cr Murphy said the date for the lanes’ installation would be finalised once plans were complete.
Lucy is the urban affairs reporter for the Brisbane Times, with a special interest in Brisbane City Council.