CYCLISTS have warned that stretches of road around Bendigo are a safety hazard and that urgent repairs are needed to fix potholes and road surfaces.
A number of popular cycling routes toward Kangaroo Flat, Sedgwick and Mandurang have been identified as some of the most patchy areas to ride on.
Cyclist Brad Macallum said the wear and tear along many road surfaces had left cyclists with dangerous conditions to ride on.
He said most major highways were generally well maintained but there was always a danger of potholes.
“Particularly on narrow roads or where there’s no bike lanes at all it can be really bad,” he said. “I hit a pothole recently that punctured my back tyre.
“I was riding in a group and you can’t see much in front of you in that situation. I’m lucky it wasn’t worse; it can be fairly savage.”
Cyclist Syd Anastee said his biggest concern was the condition of roads in inner Bendigo.
“They’re probably worse than the outer road bits,” he said.
Mr Anastee said the roads in the inner city were also covered in of glass and other hazards.
“It seems it is someone’s paid profession to go around and
smash glass bottles into bike lanes,” he said.
Harding Cycles’ Terry Schintler said he had seen an increase in punctures from glass.
“Especially since New Year’s Eve, there’s a lot of glass,” he said.
“Sticks and dirt on the roads make the lanes pretty dirty.”
Mr Schintler said there were roads where potholes and surfaces had not been repaired for a long time.
“Out towards Mandurang, there’s a lot of work that needs to be done,” he said.
VicRoads regional director Mal Kersting said cyclists’ concerns were acknowledged with the creation of more bike lanes.
“New bicycle lanes were included in the upgrade of the Calder Highway and Specimen Hill Road intersection at Long Gully and on-road bicycle lanes were extended on the Calder Highway between View Street and Bendigo-Maryborough Road, Kangaroo Flat,” he said.
“VicRoads will continue to work closely with City of Greater Bendigo to identify potential projects to improve on-road bicycle facilities.”
City of Greater Bendigo acting chief executive Marg Allan said the council was keen to expand the bicycle network and keep it well maintained.
“Last year’s budget included about $1.26 million for new bike/walking path projects, including further work on the O’Keefe Rail Trail and a planned underpass in High Street,” she said.
“The council spends about $10 million a year on maintaining infrastructure including roads, , footpaths and bike paths.”