Gungahlin traffic woes

Xtra 19 April 2016 91

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Is anyone else finding the daily commute out of Gungahlin difficult?

My concerns are, as the population of the district increases the amount of traffic on the roads will only increase. Horse Park Dr, parts of Flemington Rd are single lane – not sufficient for the morning volumes of traffic.  Compared to Tuggeranong and Belconnen, Gungahlin does not seem to have a road network capable of dispersing traffic at peak times.

What measures will be put in place when the light rail gets underway? Flemington Road is likely to be further constrained for quite some time – has anyone in government considered measures for dealing with the light rail and traffic leaving Gungahlin?


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dungfungus dungfungus 10:00 pm 26 Mar 15

Maya123 said :

nemesisrocks said :

There’s a pretty easy solution to all your problems.

Don’t live in Gungahlin.

I live in the city, and walk to work. 12 minute “commute”, which includes stopping by a cafe on the way for my morning brew. I’ll never understand people who buy McMansions in the middle of nowhere, only to waste two hours a day of their lives sitting in a car, and then complain when everyone else who did the same thing is stuck beside them in traffic.

Good comments. When I bought my first house many years ago the norm then was to buy a new house in Tuggeranong. If I had done this as most first home buyers appeared to be doing, not only would the house be new, I would have had a better and a bigger house with extras like an ensuite, rather than the old, seen better days, tiny house I bought in Narrabundah. In fact, the same people who were buying in Tuggeranong warned me against buying such a crappy (my word) house in the iffy lower Narrabundah area. I ignored them and bought the old Narrabundah house. No way did I want to live so far from work and then complain about the roads and bus service. I could ride a bike to work. I never regretted buying closer to work. Yes, in those days lower Narrabundah was an iffy place to live, but I was fortunately never worried by the people living in the two houses dealing in heroin, for instance, across the road, or the two houses also in my street where local burglars lived (I was probably lucky there I was never broken into, but my old house didn’t look that attractive.) In fact they would say hello to me. Three doors down the street there was a very nasty character, but I just avoided him (he was also one of the burglars). I did confront his young (far better natured) ‘apprentice’ robbing the building site next door, and he dropped what he was about to steal and fled. There were other less than desirable people around too. Why I am giving these examples, is that even with all these local reasons why the area might not have been desirable to live in, the advantage of being closer to work far outweighed moving to an outer suburb with the transport woes. Narrabundah has now changed. The heroin houses were raided by police and the owners went to jail. Other houses also had late night raids. Over the years the area has improved, so obviously there some other people who also didn’t want the transport hassle of the outer suburbs and saw the sense of downgrading what they wanted in a house and living closer to work.
If being stuck in long lines of traffic, the slow drive to work and the bad public transport is something you are likely to complain about, DON’T buy in the outer suburbs. Lower your expectations for what you want in a house and live closer to work.

“Narrabundah has now changed. The heroin houses were raided by police and the owners went to jail.”
Now the chavs pass their time by slashing tyres on cars.

vintage123 vintage123 9:30 pm 26 Mar 15

I certainly wouldn’t choose to house my family in a street of drug dealers and theives. It would be highly irresponsible and unsafe, especially for young children and my wife. I also don’t agree that people move to gungahlin to live in ultra modern McMansions. It’s more likely that those who live in the north were unable to afford living any closer to the centre. Additionally it is logistically important to live in an area that has services such as childcare and schooling, and an area that allows access to facilities such as grocery shops and convenience stores. In this day and age people tend to move from their place of employment more often and if this occurs it is not viable to sell the home, pull the kids from school and move 20km to the other side of canberra. The reality is that with a family and two working parents more often than not it will involve some more of commute and in the ACT this normally involves a commute either to the city, through the city or from North to South or East to west or vice versa. I guess all we are asking for is an efficient way to achieve this commute whether it be by bus, car, tram or push bike. There is nothing worse than being stuck in traffic nowing that for every minute late to childcare you are going to be charged six dollars.

Maya123 Maya123 7:16 pm 26 Mar 15

nemesisrocks said :

There’s a pretty easy solution to all your problems.

Don’t live in Gungahlin.

I live in the city, and walk to work. 12 minute “commute”, which includes stopping by a cafe on the way for my morning brew. I’ll never understand people who buy McMansions in the middle of nowhere, only to waste two hours a day of their lives sitting in a car, and then complain when everyone else who did the same thing is stuck beside them in traffic.

Good comments. When I bought my first house many years ago the norm then was to buy a new house in Tuggeranong. If I had done this as most first home buyers appeared to be doing, not only would the house be new, I would have had a better and a bigger house with extras like an ensuite, rather than the old, seen better days, tiny house I bought in Narrabundah. In fact, the same people who were buying in Tuggeranong warned me against buying such a crappy (my word) house in the iffy lower Narrabundah area. I ignored them and bought the old Narrabundah house. No way did I want to live so far from work and then complain about the roads and bus service. I could ride a bike to work. I never regretted buying closer to work. Yes, in those days lower Narrabundah was an iffy place to live, but I was fortunately never worried by the people living in the two houses dealing in heroin, for instance, across the road, or the two houses also in my street where local burglars lived (I was probably lucky there I was never broken into, but my old house didn’t look that attractive.) In fact they would say hello to me. Three doors down the street there was a very nasty character, but I just avoided him (he was also one of the burglars). I did confront his young (far better natured) ‘apprentice’ robbing the building site next door, and he dropped what he was about to steal and fled. There were other less than desirable people around too. Why I am giving these examples, is that even with all these local reasons why the area might not have been desirable to live in, the advantage of being closer to work far outweighed moving to an outer suburb with the transport woes. Narrabundah has now changed. The heroin houses were raided by police and the owners went to jail. Other houses also had late night raids. Over the years the area has improved, so obviously there some other people who also didn’t want the transport hassle of the outer suburbs and saw the sense of downgrading what they wanted in a house and living closer to work.
If being stuck in long lines of traffic, the slow drive to work and the bad public transport is something you are likely to complain about, DON’T buy in the outer suburbs. Lower your expectations for what you want in a house and live closer to work.

JC JC 6:36 pm 26 Mar 15

shellcase said :

I predict the speed limit along Flemington/Northbourne will be reduced to 50 k’s. Further to all of the considerations and problems this project raises is something I haven’t heard mentioned and that is provision for parking of cars for those who live in outer areas of Gungahlin and will still need to drive to the station to catch the train.

You obviously have never looked at any of the plans or discussions. A park and ride is planned, with the rather large car park planned to be built next to the Mitchell Waste Transfer Station.

JC JC 6:31 pm 26 Mar 15

Elf said :

Does anyone know how the government works out where to spend their road money? Take a trip along Coppins Crossing and you’ll be scratching your head like me! After the river crossing coming from Belconnen it becomes this amazing dual lane road complete with shiny new bus lanes but what is missing is the houses and the buses! Clearly someone very important lives out there and requested the type of roads we got prior to self government.

Some one needs to explain this. On a Saturday at 10am i was at the end of the line on Mirabel drive with traffic banked up from Gungahlin Drive, no accidents, no peak hour and with the land set aside for duplication beside me reminding me why we need to turn governments over every 2 terms regardless of their stain. I get to Coppins crossing, and just me and 2 other cars out in the country with a lane or two or three counting the bus lanes and no one to hold us up.

How do they justify this!

How do they justify it, umm it’s called planning ahead.

Anyway your post just proves no matter what the government just cannot win. Build Gungahlin (and Tuggernong before it), with single lane roads that eventually get congested and people whinge, as you have done in your second paragraph. Build a new area with wide roads designed for the future, people whinge, as you have done in your first. So great one a double whinge in the same post.

But getting back to John Gorton Drive (the new road isn’t called Coppins Crossing Road) what is strange is the median isn’t wide enough for any future light rail. This despite the way the housing being high density like Flemmington Road.

PS self government has been in since 1989, and if you were to look at John Gorton Drive you might notice it was built a lot more recently, like on the past few years. So not sure who the important person is and why they asked for this before self government.

chewy14 chewy14 6:05 pm 26 Mar 15

Elf said :

Does anyone know how the government works out where to spend their road money? Take a trip along Coppins Crossing and you’ll be scratching your head like me! After the river crossing coming from Belconnen it becomes this amazing dual lane road complete with shiny new bus lanes but what is missing is the houses and the buses! Clearly someone very important lives out there and requested the type of roads we got prior to self government.

Some one needs to explain this. On a Saturday at 10am i was at the end of the line on Mirabel drive with traffic banked up from Gungahlin Drive, no accidents, no peak hour and with the land set aside for duplication beside me reminding me why we need to turn governments over every 2 terms regardless of their stain. I get to Coppins crossing, and just me and 2 other cars out in the country with a lane or two or three counting the bus lanes and no one to hold us up.

How do they justify this!

Haha, Nice one.

I can’t possibly think why John Gorton Drive has been built like that. It’s like they built it solely for those strange big trucks and eathmovers all over the place. I wonder what they’re all doing out there?

ozmaniac ozmaniac 5:02 pm 26 Mar 15

tim_c said :

It’s all part of Shane Rottenbury’s strategy to get people out of their cars and into…….. err, um, alternative forms of transport, such as…. err, ugh, sustainable alternatives.

Spot on! Greens won’t rest until every internal combustion engine is gone. That should do wonders for the local economy – fewer car dealers, mechanics, RTA staff cuts, RUS revenue loss. They were opposed to the Majura Parkway upgrade, simply ignoring the volume of road freight using this road, but I guess trucks are too environmentally evil as well.

ChrisinTurner ChrisinTurner 4:35 pm 26 Mar 15

There is no work for people living in Gungahlin because their office space was built at the airport. Now they are constucting a very expensive freeway to connect the workers with their offices. Great planning.

Can anyone tell me how long it takes the morning route 202 express buses to get to the city, even with no bus-lane in Northbourne Ave?

Belconnen Way works OK with two car-lanes plus one bus-lane. Why wouldn’t this work for Northbourne?

rosscoact rosscoact 3:22 pm 26 Mar 15

nemesisrocks said :

There’s a pretty easy solution to all your problems.

Don’t live in Gungahlin.

I live in the city, and walk to work. 12 minute “commute”, which includes stopping by a cafe on the way for my morning brew. I’ll never understand people who buy McMansions in the middle of nowhere, only to waste two hours a day of their lives sitting in a car, and then complain when everyone else who did the same thing is stuck beside them in traffic.

My commute is the 10 seconds it takes me to walk downstairs but I don’t post that in a thread about roads because it would be fatuous.

Elf Elf 3:15 pm 26 Mar 15

Does anyone know how the government works out where to spend their road money? Take a trip along Coppins Crossing and you’ll be scratching your head like me! After the river crossing coming from Belconnen it becomes this amazing dual lane road complete with shiny new bus lanes but what is missing is the houses and the buses! Clearly someone very important lives out there and requested the type of roads we got prior to self government.

Some one needs to explain this. On a Saturday at 10am i was at the end of the line on Mirabel drive with traffic banked up from Gungahlin Drive, no accidents, no peak hour and with the land set aside for duplication beside me reminding me why we need to turn governments over every 2 terms regardless of their stain. I get to Coppins crossing, and just me and 2 other cars out in the country with a lane or two or three counting the bus lanes and no one to hold us up.

How do they justify this!

shellcase shellcase 3:11 pm 26 Mar 15

Traffic out of Gungahlin will be worse than now. The new toy train set construction will see all intersections controlled by traffic lights and the toy will get priority while traffic waits.

Pedestrians crossing Flemington/Northbourne to board or alight from the train will create increased traffic delays while they walk across the new pedestrian crossings at each train station.

I predict the speed limit along Flemington/Northbourne will be reduced to 50 k’s. Further to all of the considerations and problems this project raises is something I haven’t heard mentioned and that is provision for parking of cars for those who live in outer areas of Gungahlin and will still need to drive to the station to catch the train.

For the past forty years-plus we have subsidized ACTION to the tune of more than $2M per week, yep, per week. That doesn’t look like easing up any time soon and this project, built for no reason other than to appease the Greens will double that impost.

nemesisrocks nemesisrocks 3:06 pm 26 Mar 15

There’s a pretty easy solution to all your problems.

Don’t live in Gungahlin.

I live in the city, and walk to work. 12 minute “commute”, which includes stopping by a cafe on the way for my morning brew. I’ll never understand people who buy McMansions in the middle of nowhere, only to waste two hours a day of their lives sitting in a car, and then complain when everyone else who did the same thing is stuck beside them in traffic.

housebound housebound 1:38 pm 26 Mar 15

We see it every morning when we cross the Barton Highway: from Belconnen with its free flowing traffic to Gungahlin with traffic jams at almost every intersection. It’s like night and day (or day and night, to keep the simile consistent).

Demographics must have something to do with it, including age structure and household occupancy rates, but even so, a well-planned urban system should be designed for the population it serves. It shouldn’t be designed against it, which is what we seem to see. Even getting out of individual suburbs to enter the main roads seems to be difficult at the wrong time of day (if the queues at the intersections are anything to go by).

Sadly, widening a few critical roads probably will see the major bottlenecks pushed down the road a bit. Even an overpass at the GDE-Barton Highway intersection wouldn’t make much difference any more. There’s still those badly timed traffic lights that back everything up for miles.

Whoever designed the road and traffic system for Gungahlin should count themselves lucky they don’t live in an era of executions for stuff-ups.

tim_c tim_c 12:13 pm 26 Mar 15

It’s all part of Shane Rottenbury’s strategy to get people out of their cars and into…….. err, um, alternative forms of transport, such as…. err, ugh, sustainable alternatives.

It takes a special skillset to achieve the traffic jams of big cities when we have such a small population. And in the event that even this isn’t enough, he can be counted on to slow you down (as well as increasing operating costs, fuel and maintenance, noise and carbon emissions) by sticking inverted potholes (speedhumps) all over the roads with hitherto smooth-flowing traffic.

Tenpoints Tenpoints 11:05 am 26 Mar 15

If it’s taking an hour to get to Civic from Gunghalin in the car, you may well be faster on a bike. Plus you don’t need to allocate cardio time at the gym.

I can no longer blame my commute time on anyone else. And I’m one less person pushing for more – expensive-roads.

On the topic of jobs, I believe Shared Services ICT is moving up north very soon, which will hopefully be the start of a trend towards more office jobs in Gunghalin.

You’re right about the tram priorities though. It’s not a good look for ACTGOV to erode the benefit of the tram by encouraging driving with more roads, especially before giving other areas a bit of love. I hear Tuggeranong isn’t great for commuting to work either, and it’s even a little bit further away from Civic.

I’d like to see this light rail project spread around Canberra. Sooner or later it will be a better value proposition than driving.

watto23 watto23 10:24 am 26 Mar 15

wildturkeycanoe said :

The current congestion is most likely a result of the roadworks on Majura Parkway, forcing everyone heading to the Airport and Fyshwick to divert through the city instead. I heard this first hand from a regular commuter who found it quicker to go through Limestone Avenue than the chaos out east.
As for the toy train set, it won’t be any quicker to drive your car to the Gunners town center, pay for parking and then take the train in to town, stopping at every station on the way, then walking all the way to your conveniently located office some blocks from the final stop.

Of course the tram won’t be any quicker once its built, which is my gripe. However I can see that eventually it will be the best way to travel, because parking costs will go up in the city and traffic is only going to get worse. I think a connection through to Russell and the airport actually makes sense though (I’m sure if the Government paid for it to Russell the airport would pay for the link to the airport. At least then if you fly into Canberra you can catch the light rail to the city where public transport is and/or better for people to pick you up from and give you a lift.

unclebill unclebill 8:07 am 26 Mar 15

Abbott has the answer, no jobs to drive to.

rosscoact rosscoact 9:36 pm 25 Mar 15

wildturkeycanoe said :

The current congestion is most likely a result of the roadworks on Majura Parkway, forcing everyone heading to the Airport and Fyshwick to divert through the city instead. I heard this first hand from a regular commuter who found it quicker to go through Limestone Avenue than the chaos out east.

Tell your friend to keep going along Limestone, it leaves the 25 minute run to Kingston clear for the smart people.

danieleatspizza747 danieleatspizza747 8:24 pm 25 Mar 15

While Horse Park Drive desperately needs to be widened to four lanes from South of Gundaroo drive to the Federal Highway, which will effectively double the capacity of the road, unfortunately a new traffic problem and significant cause of delay is about to be created with the opening of the Majura Parkway.

At present, traffic on Horse Park Drive slows to 40km/h or less every morning around where it becomes the Majura Parkway underneath the Federal Highway due to roadworks; however, very rarely does traffic actually come to a stop. Once work is complete, this will be another TWO sets of traffic lights to negotiate on Horse Park Drive, which will bring traffic to a complete stop every couple of minutes for the benefit of four or five cars to cross the Southbound lanes. So every time the lights change, this will probably back traffic up all the way to the Well Station Drive intersection.

Considering the importance of the Majura Parkway and the large traffic volumes it is expected to carry, and taking into account the ever increasing population of Gungahlin, the construction of the Majura Parkway should have been the perfect opportunity to upgrade this intersection with the Federal Highway to a fully free flowing interchange, which would solve all congestion problems in this area. Instead, much like the Barton Highway roundabout “upgrade”, traffic lights have been chosen, no doubt to save cost. Again. the ACT government is not building adequate road infrastructure for future population growth.

I think it’s time the Glenloch interchange lost its title as the only one of its kind in Canberra!

wildturkeycanoe wildturkeycanoe 5:16 pm 25 Mar 15

The current congestion is most likely a result of the roadworks on Majura Parkway, forcing everyone heading to the Airport and Fyshwick to divert through the city instead. I heard this first hand from a regular commuter who found it quicker to go through Limestone Avenue than the chaos out east.
As for the toy train set, it won’t be any quicker to drive your car to the Gunners town center, pay for parking and then take the train in to town, stopping at every station on the way, then walking all the way to your conveniently located office some blocks from the final stop.

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