Motorcycle trial on Hoddle Street

VicRoads commenced a six-month trial allowing motorcycles and scooters to use the southbound bus lane on Hoddle Street, between the Eastern Freeway inbound off-ramp and Victoria Parade in November 2011.

Overview

This trial permitted motorcycles to use the bus lane 7am to 9:30am Monday to Friday with existing users including buses, bicycles, taxis and class VHA/B/C (hire cars) vehicles.

While the trial has concluded, motorcyclists can continue using the Hoddle Street bus lane while the evaluation is underway.

VicRoads will be alerting motorcyclists when they can no longer use the bus lane. Please look out for newspaper advertisements and variable message signs with this information. Please obey the road rules and road signs when using the bus lane.

Purpose

This trial aimed to assess travel times and other benefits for motorcycles and determine if there are any impacts on buses and other road users.

The practice of motorcycles using bus lanes is not new. Motorcycles use bus lanes in the Australian Capital Territory, New South Wales and throughout New Zealand. In the United Kingdom, trials of motorcycles using bus lanes are currently underway.

Questions & answers

How will the trial be monitored?

VicRoads will compare data gathered from a before study with data gathered during the trial period. This information, along with community feedback, will be used as input into consideration of whether motorcycles should have access to bus lanes.

The trial concluded in mid-2012.

When does the Hoddle Street bus lane operate?

7am to 9.30am Monday to Friday.

Who is permitted to use the Hoddle Street bus lane, between the Eastern Freeway and Victoria Parade, during bus lane operating hours?

Buses, bicycles, taxis and class VHA/B/C (hire cars) vehicles are permitted.  Motorcycles are also permitted as part of the ongoing trial. 

How will motorcyclists know when to stop using the bus lane?

VicRoads will be alerting motorcyclists when they can no longer use the Hoddle Street bus lane. 

Please look out for newspaper ads and variable message signs with this information. In the meantime, please obey the road rules and road signs when using the bus lane.

Can motorcyclists use Hoddle Street southbound kerb side lane at all times?

Yes, outside bus lane operating hours, the bus lane functions as a general traffic lane.

When can motorcyclists proceed on the ‘B-signal’?

Motorcyclists can only proceed on the ‘B-signal’ during bus lane operating hours.  This applies to all vehicles permitted to use the Hoddle Street bus lane during bus lane operating hours.

Outside the Hoddle Street bus lane operating hours, only buses can proceed on the ‘B-signal’.

Are motorcyclists permitted to use the bus lane on the Eastern Freeway (inbound) to turn left into Hoddle Street?

Motorcyclists are not permitted to travel on the Eastern Freeway bus lane, this includes the last 100m of the bus lane approaching Hoddle Street.

Road Rule 158(1)(a) ‘Exceptions to driving in special purpose lanes etc.’ states that:

The driver of any vehicle may drive for up to the permitted distance (100m) in a…bus lane… if it is necessary for the driver to drive in the lane to enter or leave the roads.

Given there are four left turn traffic lanes available on the Eastern Freeway inbound off-ramp at Hoddle Street, which all motorists can use, it is ‘not necessary’ to use the bus lane to turn left into Hoddle Street.

Instructions on how to locate a full copy of the Road Safety Road Rules 2009 can be found at Road Management Act, regulations & codes page.  

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