It has taken a long time but the ACT Government has finally decided to take buses off Anketell Street after years of lobbying from businesses and the Tuggeranong Community Council.
The decision, which will come into effect next year in April, comes after a motion in the Legislative Assembly by Liberal Member for Brindabella Nicole Lawder in August.
But the council launched a petition calling for the buses to be re-routed more than two years ago, garnering enough support for the issue to be referred to a committee.
It said back in 2017 that the Tuggeranong Liveability Survey identified the single biggest impact on the Town Centre amenity as being the use of Anketell Street by Transport Canberra buses.
Council president Glenys Patulny said then that the buses were noisy, smelly and unhealthy, and the on-street cafes had them passing within a metre of tables.
“We’re trying to add to the amenity of the place and the buses are a nightmare,” she said.
Transport and City Services Minister Chris Steel has announced that buses would now be removed from Anketell Street followed the completion of the Anketell Street upgrades earlier this year and after feedback from residents and businesses.
“The community made it clear they wanted to see buses taken off Anketell Street so they could enjoy their newly upgraded main street with a cleaner and quieter environment, with more options for business to expand their outdoor dining facilities,” Mr Steel said.
“The Government has listened to the community and I am pleased to announce we will be re-routing buses off Anketell Street.”
Buses will now travel into the interchange via Soward Drive, turn right along Athllon Drive, take the signalised right on to Anketell Street and into the interchange, with new bus stops being added on Athllon Drive.
“This will help reduce heavy vehicle traffic along both Anketell Street and Cowlishaw Street, and make Tuggeranong’s main street a better place for people.”
Ms Lawder said the decision was a win for the entire Tuggeranong community.
“Thousands of residents and visitors will benefit from a bus free zone on Anketell Street,” she said.
“The Anketell Street precinct is the heart of the Tuggeranong Town Centre. People want to enjoy the outdoor dining and retail opportunities, but the constant interruption of Labor’s noisy, fuming buses has inhibited the outdoor lifestyle.”