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The Tacked on Look: ACT Road modifications.

By MelonHead - 18 January 2013 42

It doesn’t take much looking to find “exciting” roadworks anywhere in Canberra. What I can’t help but notice is that when these works are finished, they all look tacked on and cheap. Then there is quality of build which is usually average to poor.

Cases in point are the new merge lane from Parkes Way to Commonwealth Ave. Rough to drive on, sketchy geometry and still a pile of dirt left nearby. What about the Kings Ave overpass of Parkes Way? Strange twists and turns on almost every approach, and traffic lights with a suburb’s worth of space between them.

Don’t mention the GDE, its intial construction, the duplication, and the astounding exit path for Aranda. Seriously, who approved that? And why?

There are many more examples. I need convincing that doing the job right the first time would cost so much more, that I should be satisfied with the existing result. Am I too fussy, or is this what we have to look forward to in the future?

What’s Your opinion?


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42 Responses to
The Tacked on Look: ACT Road modifications.
1
shirty_bear 2:35 pm
18 Jan 13
#

Surely the main problem is that government departments (and many bureaucracies) simply don’t look beyond this years’ budget. There’s insufficient incentive to take the long-term view at the cost of short-term dollars or popularity.

There’s no such thing as an objective review of past inefficiencies, or long-term costs of previous short-sightedness. It just doesn’t happen.

What’s the line about those who ignore history being doomed to repeat it?

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2
Georgie Girl 2:38 pm
18 Jan 13
#

These will all pale into insignificance, when the accident waiting to happen is finished on Tharwa Drive.

New pedestrian lights are being installed near Lanyon Market Place. But not just anywhere, at the very point where two lanes merge into one (for southbound traffic). Drivers already set themselves dangerous challenges, such as I’m behind you as we enter the round about but I WILL be ahead of you by the time the lanes merge. Now they will have the added challenge of getting ahead AND beating the changing lights.

It’s just a matter of time till the first accident occurs…

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3
youami 2:48 pm
18 Jan 13
#

You are so right there, road construction in the ACT is amateur at best, some more examples for S&G:

1. Edinburgh Av heading towards Parkes Way at the new Nishi building and where the ‘new’ pavement ends and the existing pavement continues there is a drop in road height of about 20-30cm.

2. the cycle path construction along Marcus Clarke St (which I support btw) closed the northern end pedestrian crossing at the lights cnr Allsop St to divert pedestrians to the southern end (which they have been working on for weeks) only to not have the pavement completed so pedestrians going to IGA or City West bus station or City West carpark, etc have to walk on what looks like crushed mortar which is soft and is a trip hazard.

3. linemarking just north of the new Barry Drive/Clunies Ross intersection has the merge lane prematurely ending leaving the through lane about twice as wide as a regular lane for about 50m —same issue exists at the onramp to Caswell Dr south where the linemarkings are haphazard and open out into one and a half lanes before closing to form the merge.

4. remember it is taking 3 years to resurface Anzac Parade and still going – not to mention the ridiculous merge of the curb and middle lanes just before the Limestone Av roundabout? I mean why not have the left two lanes turn left? It doesn’t make sense.

TAMS argue on their website that ACT roads are built to Australian standards but there is no consistency in their roads to justify that claim. And as older posts here on RA this includes speed limit signs plus those bloody red-arrows at lights — I mean it is ludicrous that you can’t turn right without a green arrow in a 70km/h zone across light traffic in the ACT but you can cross a three-lane divided national highway in Sydney with heavy traffic without a waiting for an arrow.

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4
Keijidosha 2:52 pm
18 Jan 13
#

What about the Kings Ave overpass of Parkes Way? Strange twists and turns on almost every approach, and traffic lights with a suburb’s worth of space between them.

The dog-legged eastbound approach to this overpass is laughable. With the amount of vacant land available the transition from old to new alignments should have been much smoother.

Don’t mention the GDE, its intial construction, the duplication, and the astounding exit path for Aranda. Seriously, who approved that? And why?

I believe that the Bandjalong Street exit was not originally on the GDE plans, but vocal Aranda residents pushed the issue. The result is the convoluted mess you see today.

Don’t get me started on poor roads planning and implementation in the ACT. I’m continually dumbfounded by the ineptitude and lack of common sense shown by those responsible.

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5
Madam Cholet 3:04 pm
18 Jan 13
#

youami said :

You are so right there, road construction in the ACT is amateur at best, some more examples for S&G:

1. Edinburgh Av heading towards Parkes Way at the new Nishi building and where the ‘new’ pavement ends and the existing pavement continues there is a drop in road height of about 20-30cm.

And to boot, coming the other way off of Parkes and onto Edinburgh. Insert trendy new euro traffic lights just as drivers arestill sorting out how incoming traffic merges to cross two or three lanes so they can go left right or straight ahead. Everyone obviously wants to merge earlier rather than later.

When the post Xmas traffic returns in full, it’s going to be interesting. Not sure why the Nishi exit had to be right there and why it could not exit around where the cafe is. Not that familiar with the layout so maybe it is the only place, but it’s awkward. Throw in cinema traffic in the evening and you have a real carpark taking shape!

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6
Tony 3:50 pm
18 Jan 13
#

Add Clarrie Hermes Dr extension to the Barton High. This carries fairly light traffic, but needed repairs months after completion due to pot hold everywhere – and it still like surface of the moon.

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7
youami 4:36 pm
18 Jan 13
#

Madam Cholet said :

youami said :

You are so right there, road construction in the ACT is amateur at best, some more examples for S&G:

1. Edinburgh Av heading towards Parkes Way at the new Nishi building and where the ‘new’ pavement ends and the existing pavement continues there is a drop in road height of about 20-30cm.

And to boot, coming the other way off of Parkes and onto Edinburgh. Insert trendy new euro traffic lights just as drivers arestill sorting out how incoming traffic merges to cross two or three lanes so they can go left right or straight ahead. Everyone obviously wants to merge earlier rather than later.

When the post Xmas traffic returns in full, it’s going to be interesting. Not sure why the Nishi exit had to be right there and why it could not exit around where the cafe is. Not that familiar with the layout so maybe it is the only place, but it’s awkward. Throw in cinema traffic in the evening and you have a real carpark taking shape!

I hear you… I come onto Edinburgh from the east off Parkes Way and I have to cross two lanes to turn left into Marcus Clarke St (like 90% of traffic coming off in the same direction). In fact, the off ramp used to be two lanes at the lights but they permanently closed one of the lanes early in construction… thing is they marked off and closed the left lane with a painted island but then less than a month later they swapped it around so the left lane is open again and the right lane now closed with painted island… you can still see three versions of the road as they removed the old lines by taking off a layer of the road base: the original that was in place for probably decades, the first attempt that lasted less than a month, and now the current attempt.

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8
Spykler 5:25 pm
18 Jan 13
#

youami said :

Madam Cholet said :

youami said :

You are so right there, road construction in the ACT is amateur at best, some more examples for S&G:

1. Edinburgh Av heading towards Parkes Way at the new Nishi building and where the ‘new’ pavement ends and the existing pavement continues there is a drop in road height of about 20-30cm.

And to boot, coming the other way off of Parkes and onto Edinburgh. Insert trendy new euro traffic lights just as drivers arestill sorting out how incoming traffic merges to cross two or three lanes so they can go left right or straight ahead. Everyone obviously wants to merge earlier rather than later.

When the post Xmas traffic returns in full, it’s going to be interesting. Not sure why the Nishi exit had to be right there and why it could not exit around where the cafe is. Not that familiar with the layout so maybe it is the only place, but it’s awkward. Throw in cinema traffic in the evening and you have a real carpark taking shape!

I hear you… I come onto Edinburgh from the east off Parkes Way and I have to cross two lanes to turn left into Marcus Clarke St (like 90% of traffic coming off in the same direction). In fact, the off ramp used to be two lanes at the lights but they permanently closed one of the lanes early in construction… thing is they marked off and closed the left lane with a painted island but then less than a month later they swapped it around so the left lane is open again and the right lane now closed with painted island… you can still see three versions of the road as they removed the old lines by taking off a layer of the road base: the original that was in place for probably decades, the first attempt that lasted less than a month, and now the current attempt.

I knew I could not possibly be the only one horrified at taking my life into my own hands whenever I have to traverse across Edinburgh ave to get to Marcus Clarke (or the more spine-tingling left turn onto Hales street to get into the ANU)..Stay tuned for multiple accidents, including one with a cyclist as a green strip runs across the Hales st turn-off..:(

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9
JC 7:50 pm
18 Jan 13
#

So have any of you bothered to provide feedback using the fix my street page on Canberra connect?

If not go to the webpage below and do so.

I have done so with a few issues, including the relocated merge on Southern Cross Drive and I can assure you they do read what you have to say and do contact you. In relation to the Southern Cross Drive merge there have been issues, and someone from ACT Roads contacted me today to advise that due to complaints they WILL be making changes.

https://www.contact.act.gov.au/app/ask/c/2825%2C2837/session/L2F2LzEvdGltZS8xMzU4NDk4NTk1L3NpZC9EbVE5Y0JnbA%3D%3D

In relation to some of the issues, I do agree 100% that modifications do end up with some weird situations that could have been done better (no doubt at extra cost though). My pet hate is varying road surfaces, ie one chip seal in part of the lane and normal asphalt for the other, why not reseal the whole lane for a short distance to make the transition smooth.

And with Clarie Hermes Drive, I believe the chip seal part of that road has been built to a lesser quality as it is a temporary alignment and will be changed when the area is developed. The end near Casey is the final alignment. This kind of arrangement has been common for ages. Take the old Gungahlin Drive allignment for example around Mitchell and Horse Park from the Highway around.

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10
J0HN 8:44 pm
18 Jan 13
#

I heard that the GDE was taken from an American road design. If you think about driving on the right hand side of the road the Aranda intersection works, well better than it does now.

The resurfacing of random short stretches of suburban roads is dangerous. The amount of loose gravel left all over the road is a joke.

As a taxpayer I’d settle for less than half the amount of roadworks, done properly, for the same money we pay now.

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11
Deckard 10:04 pm
18 Jan 13
#

J0HN said :

I heard that the GDE was taken from an American road design.

Wasn’t that the urban myth of the glenloch interchange? Before the GDE was a glint in your mother’s eye…

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12
benno1 3:32 pm
19 Jan 13
#

Georgie Girl said :

These will all pale into insignificance, when the accident waiting to happen is finished on Tharwa Drive.

New pedestrian lights are being installed near Lanyon Market Place. But not just anywhere, at the very point where two lanes merge into one (for southbound traffic). Drivers already set themselves dangerous challenges, such as I’m behind you as we enter the round about but I WILL be ahead of you by the time the lanes merge. Now they will have the added challenge of getting ahead AND beating the changing lights.

It’s just a matter of time till the first accident occurs…

And yet there is an underpass 100m away that could have been utilised instead.

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13
Antagonist 4:17 pm
19 Jan 13
#

benno1 said :

Georgie Girl said :

These will all pale into insignificance, when the accident waiting to happen is finished on Tharwa Drive.

New pedestrian lights are being installed near Lanyon Market Place. But not just anywhere, at the very point where two lanes merge into one (for southbound traffic). Drivers already set themselves dangerous challenges, such as I’m behind you as we enter the round about but I WILL be ahead of you by the time the lanes merge. Now they will have the added challenge of getting ahead AND beating the changing lights.

It’s just a matter of time till the first accident occurs…

And yet there is an underpass 100m away that could have been utilised instead.

+100. This will be a textbook example of a band-aid solution causing bigger problems than it was intended to resolve. I just hope that no pedestrians are hurt when this one turns to sh!t.

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14
Pork Hunt 4:39 pm
19 Jan 13
#

J0HN said :

I heard that the GDE was taken from an American road design. If you think about driving on the right hand side of the road the Aranda intersection works, well better than it does now.

The resurfacing of random short stretches of suburban roads is dangerous. The amount of loose gravel left all over the road is a joke.

As a taxpayer I’d settle for less than half the amount of roadworks, done properly, for the same money we pay now.

American design? What, they dug a long thin hole and put bitumen in it and called it a road? The same as every other ¥#%£ does in the world?

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15
Comic_and_Gamer_Nerd 6:10 pm
19 Jan 13
#

With canberra government, and I hate to use such a cliche term, but you get what you pay for.
99% of the time, lowest bidder wins the tender.

Why exactly are the peeps responsible for the concrete pour collapsed bridge on GDE even allowed to work in this town?

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