Councils urged to create more people-friendly streets

The Heart Foundation is calling on local government to ensure all Australians have safe streets for walking and cycling during the Covid-19 crisis.

In a new position snapshot entitled “Active Streets –the new normal for public space”  the foundation says councils should allocate more space on roads and footpaths for people to walk and ride bikes while supporting social distancing, as well as making streets slower and creating “no-touch” crossings.

The Heart Foundation’s director of active living, Trevor Shilton, says there has been a surge of people walking, cycling and pursuing other healthy pursuits on local streets during the Covid-19 restrictions.

“[However], not everyone has an easy time being active in and around their community. Social distancing is difficult when there is unsafe and limited space for pedestrians.

“Bike riding is less appealing when there is heavy traffic on our roads. Providing safe spaces for walking and cycling is key to encouraging people to be more active more often.”

For more information about the Heart Foundation’s work, visit Healthy Active by Design.