(9am, Wednesday 19 March 2014, Alexandria Park Community School)
Thank you, Diane [Featherstone, Principal]. Hello, everyone - it's great to see you all here.
Well - congratulations to everyone who took part in Ride2School Day. I'm so pleased this school has decided to join in this year. You'll help boost the numbers of kids getting healthy and riding to school in our city.
Last year, more than 100,000 kids joined Ride2School Day and I hope the numbers were even more this year.
With enrolments here at Alexandria Park growing dramatically, it makes sense for more students to ride to school with less traffic congestion on local streets and fewer parking problems outside school.
Pedal power is the safe and fun way to get to school.
Students arrive energised and ready for the day and parents escape the stress of traffic jams and time constraints. And when our new George Street cycleway is finished, I hope even more of you will be able to ride safely to school.
Most of it is already built and when it's completed, linking Green Square with Central Station and the City, it will become a major route for residents living in Green Square.
It's worth remembering that children under 12 years are allowed - in fact, they're encouraged - to ride their bikes on the footpaths. And if adults are accompanying them, or carrying children on their bikes, they, too, are permitted to ride on the footpath.
I believe that there are about 20 students on the junior campus and five on the senior campus who ride regularly to school, and perhaps there are more of you, after today, who'll be interested in joining them.
The school has asked us for extra bike racks and we'll be providing those as soon as they come into stock.
Cycling is here to stay and it makes sense to learn safe cycling practises from a young age. The City runs programs to teach safe cycling, and it also campaigns to teach drivers safe driving practices in sharing the road with cyclists.
Cycling is the cleaner, quieter and healthier transport option, and as we continue to roll out our safe cycling network, it's becoming even more of an option. I hope you'll take advantage of it.
And once again, congratulations in joining in Ride2School Day.