Skip to content Skip to main navigation

News

Skilled legal advice with
accessible & personal attention

Canberrans asked for input on reclaiming Kings and Commonwealth Avenues for pedestrians and cyclists

Glynis Quinlan 24 May 2017 27

Canberrans have until July 3 to provide feedback on a draft design strategy to transform Kings and Commonwealth Avenues into landmark destinations in keeping with Walter Burley Griffin’s original vision.

The aim is to reclaim the Avenues to be attractive public spaces that are used for pedestrians and cyclists – not only cars.

Federal Minister for Local Government and Territories, Senator Fiona Nash, said Kings and Commonwealth Avenues help to form the National Triangle originally designed by Walter Burley Griffin.

“This design strategy aims to improve the Avenues, ensuring they are public spaces befitting our national capital, whilst honouring Griffin’s vision,” Ms Nash said.

National Capital Authority Chief Executive Malcolm Snow said that the two Avenues have mainly evolved in response to increases in traffic volumes without enough priority placed on their role as important public spaces.

“The NCA’s aim for Kings and Commonwealth Avenues is to transform them into destinations and landmarks in their own right,” he said.

“The proposed redesign of the Avenues will unify the public realm and the buildings that line them, while providing a sense of formality, celebration and liveliness.

“New social, business and recreational uses could be introduced along the Avenues and the broad tree-lined footpaths to create new public space activities such as outdoor dining and other public realm uses.”

A key proposal of the draft Design Strategy is to renew the streetscape character of the Avenues to turn them into destinations in their own right.

Other key proposals outlined in the strategy include:

  • widening and improving pedestrian and cycle connections along the full length of the Avenues
  • reconfiguring the roadways to better integrate existing and future public transport systems, while giving priority to pedestrians and cyclists
  • setting high-quality design standards and a consistent palette of urban detailing including signage, lighting and street furniture
  • revitalising the Avenues with unified tree and shrub plantings to reinforce their landscape character

The Kings and Commonwealth Avenues Draft Design Strategy and information on how to provide feedback are available on the NCA’s website at www.nationalcapital.gov.au. The consultation process is open until midnight on Monday July 3, 2017.

Photos supplied by the NCA and are from the Kings and Commonwealth Avenues Draft Design Strategy.

What do you think about the draft design strategy – is it on the right track? Let us know in the comments below.


What's Your Opinion?


Please login to post your comments, or connect with
27 Responses to Canberrans asked for input on reclaiming Kings and Commonwealth Avenues for pedestrians and cyclists
Filter
Order
dungfungus 10:40 am 16 Jun 17

dungfungus said :

I don’t know if anyone else has noticed or commented on the fact that not one of those artist’s impressions in the article show any sign of a carriageway for the wire-less trams.

There is a hint of a bus half obscured by a tree near the Albert Park (sorry, Parliamentary Zone) but that’s it and with due respect to the visionaries, there will never be that many pedestrians in any of the places depicted.

Is this the NCA’s mother of all Freudian Slips?

After reading today’s Canberra Times it is clear that the NCA have confirmed that they don’t want the tram in their patch.

wottaway 2:00 pm 02 Jun 17

I can’t wait to see the schmozzle when pedestrians and cyclists get more room, THEN they go and put light rail across the bridge to Woden. In a city built for cars ! Get real.

oh_ 7:39 pm 01 Jun 17

For those boulevards to become attractive to pedestrians, there would have to be places alongside that are a reason for going to and from. At the moment its no mans land – its not the Lake or the National Institutions. Raising Parkes Way seems daft when city to the lake plan is to cover it over, as does choking traffic further. If there were other solutions built and roads for people to take, then maybe, but as proposed it will attempt to push people elsewhere but create more congestion problems without solving underlying problem. I applaud opening the conversation but think this proposal is premature because the reason why the area has lots of traffic now (lack of alternative transport options, poor bus network generally, lack of extensive cycle path network covering inner suburbs) has not been addressed.

dungfungus 8:50 am 31 May 17

I don’t know if anyone else has noticed or commented on the fact that not one of those artist’s impressions in the article show any sign of a carriageway for the wire-less trams.

There is a hint of a bus half obscured by a tree near the Albert Park (sorry, Parliamentary Zone) but that’s it and with due respect to the visionaries, there will never be that many pedestrians in any of the places depicted.

Is this the NCA’s mother of all Freudian Slips?

davo101 8:14 pm 30 May 17

wildturkeycanoe said :

What was the point of spending all that money on creating a third lane if they intended to bring all those commuters to a complete standstill just to let a couple of pubes go for a stroll by the lake?

That why I was confused. While we’re asking rhetorical questions what was the point of spending all that money on grade separating the Kings Avenue-Parkes Way intersection?

Given that these have to be two of the busiest roads in Canberra it going to be a nightmare for anyone trying to get to work if they live to the south or west of Civic. Both roads are running almost at capacity now and putting in traffic lights will more than halve the capacity of both creating car parks and pushing traffic onto other roads.

Blen_Carmichael 11:30 am 30 May 17

“Reclaiming”? Interesting premise.

dungfungus 3:06 pm 29 May 17

JC said :

dungfungus said :

The people with power who have a convenient, free, private carpark in the city are determined that the rest of us will, in future, commute by tram, bicycle or foot and that is what this plan reflects.

Except thIs plan is coming from Parkes ACT and as you know no love lost between them and the mob you despise so much who work on London Cct who are inflicting the tram on you.

And interestingly this plan at the city end seems to be ignoring the city to the lake plane from the ACT government which would see Parkes Way covered not raised.

I was referring specifically to “the mob” who are the ones determining what mode of transport we will have.

Mysteryman 11:07 am 29 May 17

I’ve seen some idiotic proposals in my time, but this is something else. I can’t imagine how daft one needs to be to think this is a good idea. Those roads are the most heavily congested in Canberra every morning and afternoon. Installing signals, which are unnecessary, and removing an entire lane is probably the stupidest way of dealing with the problem of getting the tram over the water.

JC 8:55 am 29 May 17

dungfungus said :

The people with power who have a convenient, free, private carpark in the city are determined that the rest of us will, in future, commute by tram, bicycle or foot and that is what this plan reflects.

Except thIs plan is coming from Parkes ACT and as you know no love lost between them and the mob you despise so much who work on London Cct who are inflicting the tram on you.

And interestingly this plan at the city end seems to be ignoring the city to the lake plane from the ACT government which would see Parkes Way covered not raised.

Lucy Baker 9:22 pm 28 May 17

Cyclists are light. It would be straightforward, surely, to work out a bridge solution that would allow two cycle lanes to be added to the side of the bridge without limiting car traffic or stretching the bridges’ weight carrying capability. Not sure why the Griffins are being touted as having had cyclists at the forefront of their vision – anyone have evidence of that?

dungfungus 12:18 pm 27 May 17

The people with power who have a convenient, free, private carpark in the city are determined that the rest of us will, in future, commute by tram, bicycle or foot and that is what this plan reflects.

wildturkeycanoe 7:53 am 27 May 17

davo101 said :

OK, I’m confused. If you look at the map on p.37 it appears that there is going to be an at-grade intersection between Commonwealth Avenue and Parkes Way. Is this really what is proposed?

Yup, it looks like they are going to have to reduce Parkes way to 60km/h or less and install signals to the intersection. Now that is going to really mess up things into and out of the city isn’t it! What about cross traffic between Belconnen and Fyshwick, Molonglo and the airport, Tuggeranong and the City? By turning Parkes Way into a parking lot, the NCA are splitting Canberra in two and causing total chaos to traffic. Have any of the NCA staff ever been stuck on the three lane road block that is Parkes Way, at 8:30 in the morning? What was the point of spending all that money on creating a third lane if they intended to bring all those commuters to a complete standstill just to let a couple of pubes go for a stroll by the lake? Why are all these people in the city out enjoying their surroundings instead of sitting in their offices doing something productive?
Another thing, they’d have to infill Parkes Way to bring it up to grade with Commonwealth Avenue, as reducing Capital hill approaches would mean an awful lot of digging and subjecting future construction to flood risk.
Funny how it shows a tram stop on Commonwealth Avenue in the “Bridge Promenade” diagram, but nothing on the Capital Hill diagram to show how the light rail will connect to Northbourne. Perhaps a tunnel underneath?
Another fatal flaw in this design is “on road bus stops”. This is a totally coutner productive design that brings traffic to a complete standstill while passengers embark and disembark. This is pet hate of mine and it surely increases risks of collisions.

dungfungus 10:24 pm 26 May 17

Arthur Davies said :

In answer to a question regarding trams crossing the bridges on 666 minister talkback recently, the question was evaded in fine “yes minister” fashion. However a departmental person called back several days later & confirmed that the bridges will not support the weight of a tram & traffic in the same lane & that it is their intention to close a traffic lane each way to allow the trams to cross. Strange that I don’t remember the Govt mentioning this before the election.

It was known well to the govt before the election. I had contact with the then Metro Engineer regarding the bridge crossing long before the election & he told me then that it was close a lane or build a new bridge. He advised me that he had told the Govt this at that time.

I have been told by an engineer that worked on the construction of the Commonwealth Avenue bridge that the inside lanes were strengthened especially to carry the weight of earth-moving machinery that would be required to do the preparatory work for the new parliament house and the axle loading of trams can be easily accommodated. This is documented.

A existing lane would not have to be exclusive to trams anyhow; they can run with busses and cars on the same alignment.

I would suggest that the only other reason a “new” bridge will have to considered is that the “wire-less”-free trams that are required by the NCA won’t have the grunt to conquer the gradients but then again an engineer on the project would love another half billion dollars to build a new bridge.

davo101 4:40 pm 26 May 17

OK, I’m confused. If you look at the map on p.37 it appears that there is going to be an at-grade intersection between Commonwealth Avenue and Parkes Way. Is this really what is proposed?

Arthur Davies 3:29 pm 26 May 17

In answer to a question regarding trams crossing the bridges on 666 minister talkback recently, the question was evaded in fine “yes minister” fashion. However a departmental person called back several days later & confirmed that the bridges will not support the weight of a tram & traffic in the same lane & that it is their intention to close a traffic lane each way to allow the trams to cross. Strange that I don’t remember the Govt mentioning this before the election.

It was known well to the govt before the election. I had contact with the then Metro Engineer regarding the bridge crossing long before the election & he told me then that it was close a lane or build a new bridge. He advised me that he had told the Govt this at that time.

dungfungus 9:48 am 26 May 17

wildturkeycanoe said :

One point needs to be made about the plan, laid out in its 60 page picture book glory. They used Pennsylvania Avenue as an example of the unimpeded views of the Whitehouse. So why go totally against that supporting evidence and plant all those trees along both sides and in the centre of the avenues? The view along the avenue will be totally obscured. So, no more shots of parliament house from down at the lake and no more photos of architecture from across the street. When we said we wanted trees, we meant on Northbourne Avenue. Can’t they get anything right? And isn’t the tram supposed to be going down the middle, if it ever crosses the lake? Not the smartest cookies we have running the show.

I should be consulting to the ACT government and the NCA as I have just solved the problem of how the trams will cross the lake and the technology exists already, here in Australia.

https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=E1kvQN5jSTA

JC 7:49 am 26 May 17

Spiral said :

This smells like the first move to claim a lane of Commonwealth Ave bridge for the tram.

Except of course the NCA is peddling this who are known for not playing nice with the ACT Government.

I am all for making it nicer and more function to non vehicle use but frankly the traffic volumes and lack of any alternative routes for much of that traffic means it needs to be catered for and apart from a tunnel from Adelaide Ave to Parkes way cannot see how. And the later simply isn’t going to happen is it?

Spiral 8:52 pm 25 May 17

This smells like the first move to claim a lane of Commonwealth Ave bridge for the tram.

Lucy Baker 6:58 pm 25 May 17

What does “consistent palette of urban detailing” mean?

wildturkeycanoe 6:57 pm 25 May 17

One point needs to be made about the plan, laid out in its 60 page picture book glory. They used Pennsylvania Avenue as an example of the unimpeded views of the Whitehouse. So why go totally against that supporting evidence and plant all those trees along both sides and in the centre of the avenues? The view along the avenue will be totally obscured. So, no more shots of parliament house from down at the lake and no more photos of architecture from across the street. When we said we wanted trees, we meant on Northbourne Avenue. Can’t they get anything right? And isn’t the tram supposed to be going down the middle, if it ever crosses the lake? Not the smartest cookies we have running the show.

CBR Tweets

Sign up to our newsletter

Top
Copyright © 2019 Region Group Pty Ltd. All rights reserved.
the-riotact.com | aboutregional.com.au | b2bmagazine.com.au | thisiscanberra.com

Search across the site