An idea with wheel merit

LISMORE City Council's CBD-based staff could soon be donning helmets and riding bicycles to jobs.

Cr Jenny Dowell has raised the idea of staffers having access to bicycles so they have the option to ride around town, instead of using petrol-guzzling cars.

“The bikes, about three or four, will be more useful in our CBD office,” Cr Dowell said.

“The area is quite flat and easy to negotiate on a bicycle and staff can use the bikes for small trips. They have adopted the initiative in Ballina and Tweed, and it promotes good health and great sustainable behaviour for the community.

“Lismore has a cycleway plan to extend and to link Goonellabah and the CBD with safe cycleways, and this is a great opportunity for council to show initiative in environmental sustainability.”

Cr Dowell said council was active in the annual Walk to Work Day and that some council staff from Lennox Head and Ballina chose to cycle to work on the day.

“If people can't (walk to work), we encouraged them to cycle or car pool. We have a few staff who ride all the way from Lennox Head,” she said.

Cr Dowell said she would promote the idea of bicycles for council staff in next year's annual budget.

Ballina Shire Council already has two bicycles available to staff for short work-based trips. Tweed Shire Council staff are currently working through the introductory phase for bike-riding staff, who are almost reading to get out on the road.

“It helps cut down on greenhouse gas emissions,” Ballina Shire Council road safety and community education officer Natalie Chapman said. “It's also an active form of transport and good exercise for our staff.”

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