Traffic lights will be installed at the Coranderrk Street roundabout on Parkes Way to ease the expected pressure on the road network during construction of light rail Stage 2.
According to Transport Minister Chris Steel, construction on the traffic lights will begin in the first half of 2022 and will be timed to be completed when the major work to raise London Circuit begins.
Mr Steel said the roundabout is notoriously bottle-necked already, and the traffic lights will “better regulate traffic flow and improve the capacity of the intersection”.
“This roundabout currently has a dominant west-bound flow of traffic in the morning, causing major congestion for east-bound traffic coming into the city and the Parliamentary Triangle from areas like Belconnen and Tuggeranong,” he said.
The Minister expects traffic to increase significantly once construction commences thanks to other road closures and works.
Lane closures and works on Commonwealth Avenue will mean traffic has to be diverted via Kings Avenue, Tuggeranong Parkway and Monaro Highway.
With the new lights, the Minister said, 20 per cent more cars will be able to exit Parkes Way onto Coranderrk Street per hour.
The west-bound turning lanes at the roundabout will also be extended to improve storage capacity at the new lights.
ACT Government estimates suggest this will mean approximately 250 more east-bound vehicles can exit the Parkes Way onto Coranderrk Street during peak hour traffic each morning.
Road cameras will also be installed so the intersection can be managed from the ACT’s Traffic Management Centre, allowing for the timing of the lights to be managed to optimise traffic flow.
While the National Capital Authority manages the roundabout (NCA), the ACT Government has funded the upgrades through the 2021-22 ACT Budget.
As part of the broader light rail works, the ACT Government is also planning to temporarily signalise the northern side of Vernon Circle to allow safe right-turn movements onto Constitution Avenue and London Circuit for buses and other vehicles heading northbound.
He said the Government is committed to being upfront with the community regarding the upcoming delays.
The next stage of the light rail, 2A, will take the current tracks to Commonwealth Park.