27 March 2015

Traffic speeds at the Train Park - pls contact your Alderman

Di attended the City Infrastructure Committee meeting on Wednesday, and observed as the committee (after much discussion) agreed to support a formal request going to the Dept of State Growth to have a lower speed Playground Zone declared around the Train Park.  This recommendation will be put to the full Council meeting (5pm, Monday 13 April, if anyone would like to attend) for decision as to whether to send this letter.

What Council has actually done in response to the petition from residents is to install one new warning sign on the southern approach to the park:
While this sign is welcome, we believe a stronger message is needed, with the strength of potential enforcement (i.e. the road speed limit reduced to 40 kph).

It is time that traffic engineers and planners were encouraged to move beyond the reported data on incidents on the road (crash performance, deaths and serious injuries) to consider the experience of all road users (such as perceptions of safety and the incidence of near misses).   Information on these aspects may have to come from users, either via survey or community reporting tools.  For example, Bicycle Network Tasmania operates a Riders' Log, where riders can report incidents, near misses and suggestions.

We think that Council sending this formal request is important in influencing State Growth to more seriously consider the issue.  It sends the message that both the safety of our children and the wellbeing of our community need protection, and that reducing the speed of traffic in the area would be a benefit.  Certainly we have to try something, given that there is no other means being offered at the moment to reduce the volumes and speed of cars driven by people making our neighbourhood their own private highway.

Prior to the Council meeting we should do all we can to make sure the Aldermen hear our concern on this issue and have a good chance to do their own research on the matter.  Please send an email or phone as many Aldermen as you can.  Below is a list of Aldermen with their contact details.   And here are some links for information and arguments you might like to include:

Our recent blog post about traffic and speed in West Hobart

Alderman Reynolds' Motion presented at the committee meeting

The petition signed by 103 residents  (see Item 7, Page 7).  The text of the petition is:  "We the undersigned ask you as a matter of urgency to traffic calm the intersection of Hill Street and Warwick Street where Caldew Park, a popular children's playground, is located.  Many vehicles speed down Hill Street, with some drivers actually accelerating to pass through this intersection with careless regard for the safety of the children walking to and from the playground".

Note: Three Aldermen have already expressed their support for the proposal, and we are grateful for their support.  They are: Alderman Anna Reynolds, who moved the motion, and Aldermen Helen Burnett and Philip Cocker, who supported the motion in the committee.

Lord Mayor Sue Hickey  lord.mayor@hobartcity.com.au
Deputy Lord Mayor Ron Christie  ronchristie@netspace.net.au
Tanya Denison  tanyamdenison@gmail.com
Suzy Cooper ald.cooper@hobartcity.com.au
Peter Sexton ptsexton@tassie.net.au
Eva Ruzicka eva@ruzicka.id.au
Jeff Briscoe jbriscoe@netspace.net.au
Damon Thomas damon.thomas@bigpond.com
Marti Zucco ald_zucco@netspace.net.au  

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