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Victory declared over the Holt raceway

By johnboy 30 August 2012 37

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Chief Minister Gallagher has proudly announced success in calming the West Belconnen leadfeet of Spofforth Street (How you could name a street after Fred “The Demon Bowler” Spofforth and not expect people to try and go fast is a mystery).

“The Spofforth Street traffic calming measures were introduced following complaints by residents about speeding on the street, which the ACT government acted upon,” the Chief Minister said.

“Roads ACT conducted a detailed investigation into traffic conditions which found a number of safety issues caused by high speeds, especially for residents entering and exiting their residences. The investigation showed 15 percent of cars travelling down the 50km/h sign posted street were travelling over 76km/h.

“In December 2011, 13 sets of speed cushions were installed to improve road safety, reduce vehicle speeds and reduce traffic volumes along Spofforth Street between Drake Brockman Drive and Southern Cross Drive.

“At my request, the ACT Government commenced a review of the safety measures in May that were put in place and sought community comment on the effectiveness of the speed cushions.

“The feedback from the community found a majority supported the scheme. Some improvements were also identified, such as removing two sets of speed cushions as well as resizing or repositioning the speed cushions so that larger vehicles cannot straddle and speed over them, while also ensuring ACTION buses will still be able to straddle the speed cushions. The removed speed cushions can be reused in future road safety projects.


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Victory declared over the Holt raceway
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p1 9:41 am 26 Sep 12

Nightshade said :

That’s where it really gets interesting. In the street directory, Spofforth St is coloured yellow, identifying it as a secondary road, and more “major” than all the white roads going through the middle of suburbs. Beaurepaire/Trickett St are white roads. One could reasonably suppose Spofforth’s capacity would be greater than that of a minor collector road. It is the street that *should* be carrying more of the traffic.

I had the same thought, so I had a look ’round the interwebz. All of the normal map sites have Spofforth as a “bigger” road (usually orangey colour) and Beaurepaire as white (the smallest road type).

However…

ACTMAPi has Spofforth listed as “Urban residential” while Beaurepaire is listed as…. “Urban residential” to.

In comparison, Southern Cross Dr, Starke St, and Drake Brockman Dr are all listed as “Urban Distributor” .

Soooo, why are they so happy to divert traffic though a road with shops, school buildings and houses on both sides?

HenryBG 9:00 am 26 Sep 12

smont said :

A comment from ‘the other’ perspective. As somebody who lives on one of those 60km/h residential streets that also happens to be an arterial running through a Weston Creek suburb, I’d estimate that well over 30-40 per cent of cars travel over 70km/h; and a good chunk of them up around 75-80km/h. I find that pretty bloody selfish and self-centred that safety of me, my family and my neighbours is somehow less important than you getting home 30 seconds quicker. And police enforcement of speed limits? In Weston Creek? What a joke! So before you go mouthing off about ‘speed calming’ measures such as these ladies and gents, pause for a second and think about why they have been introduced before giving me your coffee-spilling sob stories.

You should do what I do – during rush-hour, drive up and down your street doing never more than 50km/h and occasionally stopping to turn into a random driveway.

The cretins in their lime-green Commodores and Ford Territories don’t go anywhere near my street anymore, and I haven’t seen anybody hooning down our street for over a year now.
And no, you can’t always expect “somebody” to “do something” about your problems – you need to take direct action yourself.

Unless you live in a faux mansion opposite a golf course and have mates running the ACT Government, of course, in which case you can ask your mates to “do something” for you, at ratepayers’ expense.

Muttsybignuts 9:49 pm 25 Sep 12

I lived on Beaurepaire Crescent for 10 years until about 7 weeks a go. Traffic has definately increased by a huge amount, with plenty of dickheads trying to go as fast as they can for as long as they can. How one of the mob with disabilities that use the Community Centre hasnt been cleaned up is beyond me…

farnarkler 6:20 pm 25 Sep 12

If these are the same as the speed humps in O’Connor, they’re really nice to go over at exactly 60km/h.

Nightshade 5:58 pm 25 Sep 12

thatsnotme said :

The report doesn’t bother to mention what the acceptable limit of Spofforth St actually is – is it a minor collector road, or a local access road? If it’s a minor collector road – which I’m sure it must be – and it has a capacity of 3,000 vehicles per day, then why all the desperate need to reduce its volumes at the expense of nearby roads?

That’s where it really gets interesting. In the street directory, Spofforth St is coloured yellow, identifying it as a secondary road, and more “major” than all the white roads going through the middle of suburbs. Beaurepaire/Trickett St are white roads. One could reasonably suppose Spofforth’s capacity would be greater than that of a minor collector road. It is the street that *should* be carrying more of the traffic.

thatsnotme 3:56 pm 25 Sep 12

Nightshade said :

TAMS original investigation of traffic on Spofforth Street was a “response to residents’ complaints about speeding and the potential increase in traffic volume as a result of the new development in West Macgregor. As a result, speed cushions were installed on Spofforth Street in December 2011.”

The stated objectives of the speed cushions were to:
– Reduce travel speeds on Spofforth Street.
– Reduce traffic volumes on Spofforth Street, and minimise its use as a short cut for traffic from West Macgregor.
– Improve road safety on Spofforth Street.

The entire report makes depressing reading. It appears to me as though it’s been written with an aim to justify the installation of the speed cushions, regardless of the results of their consultation. What’s most disturbing is that a road like Spofforth St seems to have been granted some type of ‘it’s for the residents only’ status – heaven forbid that anyone use what is a convenient and direct route. This isn’t some type of rat run through the middle of a suburb.

‘Improve road safety of Spofforth Street’ – the report identifies a total of 5 collisions over the past 10 years along the entire street. None at the one and only intersection along its length. So once every two years or so, someone doesn’t look properly when pulling out of their driveway. Yet there’s not enough money to fix up the Southern Cross / Starke St intersection, where an accident happens seemingly every week or so. $117,000 to fix a problem that in many ways doesn’t exist.

Most of the results that are broken down end up with ‘this is what the survey results said, but this is what the results from the residents of Spofforth St said’.

Nightshade said :

The comment was: “The traffic volumes on the above streets have all increased. However, the new traffic volumes are still within their environmental capacity and the acceptable limit of 3000 vehicles per day for minor collector roads (Beaurepaire Crescent and Trickett Street) and 1000 vehicles per day for local access roads (Messenger Street and Britten?Jones Drive).

… so, why did 1000 cars per day on Spofforth St merit 13 speed cushions to divert them elsewhere, but 1700 cars on another minor road is fine?

The report doesn’t bother to mention what the acceptable limit of Spofforth St actually is – is it a minor collector road, or a local access road? If it’s a minor collector road – which I’m sure it must be – and it has a capacity of 3,000 vehicles per day, then why all the desperate need to reduce its volumes at the expense of nearby roads?

Anyone with half a brain knows that if you’re building a footpath, and you want to know where the best place to put it is, you wait until pedestrians have trodden out their own path and then build your path over the top of it. A lesson that seems to have been lost on TAMS.

p1 3:01 pm 25 Sep 12

Nightshade said :

… so, why did 1000 cars per day on Spofforth St merit 13 speed cushions to divert them elsewhere, but 1700 cars on another minor road is fine?

This sums up the whole situation.

Spofforth St – 1.4kms, houses only on one side, one single intersection over its length, 1000 vehicles/day requires drastic action.

vrs

Beaurepaire Cres – 1.3kms, houses on both sides, eleven intersections over its length, 3000 vehicles/day is fine.

460cixy 2:19 pm 25 Sep 12

There’s more burnouts and noise then ever on that street since installing those cushions there’s a bloke in a patrol that goes well over 100k over them blowing the horn day and night the residents have them selves to blame

Ex Warrior 10:34 am 05 Sep 12

After a quick look at the report

Chiefs spin – The feedback from the community found a majority supported the scheme.

Report – 18% supportive of the current installations

Ex Warrior 10:09 am 05 Sep 12

Looks like a bumper edition of the Chroncle this week. Its reported this issue has made front page.

Nightshade 12:10 am 05 Sep 12

The evaluation report has been posted on the Time to Talk website.
http://timetotalk.act.gov.au/storage/Evaluation%20Report%20-%20Spofforth%20Street.pdf

TAMS original investigation of traffic on Spofforth Street was a “response to residents’ complaints about speeding and the potential increase in traffic volume as a result of the new development in West Macgregor. As a result, speed cushions were installed on Spofforth Street in December 2011.”

The stated objectives of the speed cushions were to:
– Reduce travel speeds on Spofforth Street.
– Reduce traffic volumes on Spofforth Street, and minimise its use as a short cut for traffic from West Macgregor.
– Improve road safety on Spofforth Street.

It found that prior to installing the speed cushions, traffic volumes on Spofforth St ranged from 889-1085 per day on weekdays, and decreased to 217-283 post-installation, giving reductions of 631-832 cars.

The report concludes: “Reductions in average weekday and weekend traffic volumes are quite high, and range from 498 vehicles per day to a maximum of 832 vehicles per day. This is most likely because motorists who had previously used Spofforth Street as a short cut have now intentionally avoided using it as a result of the newly installed speed cushions.”

Moving on to Beaurepaire Cres and Trickett St on p12 … outbound weekday traffic on Beaurepaire went from 1080 to 1668 (+588), and inbound from 1298 to 1673 (+375). Trickett went from 899/927 to 1385/1363 (+486/436).

The comment was: “The traffic volumes on the above streets have all increased. However, the new traffic volumes are still within their environmental capacity and the acceptable limit of 3000 vehicles per day for minor collector roads (Beaurepaire Crescent and Trickett Street) and 1000 vehicles per day for local access roads (Messenger Street and Britten?Jones Drive).

… so, why did 1000 cars per day on Spofforth St merit 13 speed cushions to divert them elsewhere, but 1700 cars on another minor road is fine?

They *have* said they will do further traffic assessment on Beaurepaire and Trickett St in consultation with residents. Hopefully *after* the traffic lights on Southern Cross Dr are working.

rhino 12:33 am 01 Sep 12

I don’t understand the logic that seems to be used where they say that going at a faster speed is more dangerous, so they must just slow people down and that makes everything safer. That may sound fine by itself, but then when they start suggesting that they should make roads deliberately dangerous so that people slow down on them and then somehow think this makes it safer, I worry. If you have a nice wide straight road, and you have no trees or poles for people to hit if they go off the road, it’s quite safe and unlikely to cause accidents, so you can safely drive faster on that road. This is an ideal circumstance where traffic can flow quickly and safely. I don’t understand why sometimes they seem to think that, despite there being no accidents on such a road, some people are going faster than some other people think they should (not by much generally) and therefore they should build in something like a chicane to destabilise the vehicles and drastically reduce their grip and increase the likelihood of crashing into another car or barrier or pole etc. I just don’t see how this is an actual improvement in safety. It will slow people down, but that is because they are seeing that the road is more dangerous to drive on, it isn’t altering what speed they think is appropriate for a given condition, it’s just making the condition worse. I would think that they should be making roads as safe as possible in all circumstances and then dealing with sections that are having accidents and working out why. Often these accidents can be minimised by altering the roads or adding barriers or islands between incoming lanes etc so that people can’t crash head on.

Of course it is a different thing if people are complaining about noise on their road and they want people to be driving more slowly past their house, but realistically there isn’t too much you can do about that in some cases, unless you plan on routing traffic elsewhere and spending some money increasing the capacity of the other route.

Jethro 8:44 pm 31 Aug 12

Knowing the street, it is fairly obvious that it was being used by people not simply as a thoroughfare, but a full on dragway…. people hooning down it at 120-130kmh+, using it for burnouts, etc.

If I lived on it I sure as hell would want something done. Speed camera probably wouldn’t stop the worst offenders because they would likely be doing it in stolen cars.

However, putting speed bumps the whole way along as they have done has effectively removed a road that was designed to be used for through traffic. Have a look at the map above, the street is shaded in yellow, highlighting the fact it has arterial purposes. With the West Macgregor extensions there is only going to be more and more traffic heading out from that direction, and with Spofforth out of the picture, that means more cars on Southern Cross and going through its notorious intersections.

I’m not sure what the solution is. Perhaps a few chicanes placed at far enough distance that they don’t become a nightmare, but still limit the ability of hoons to get up too much speed? Or perhaps, I don’ know, policing and actual harsh penalties for people caught hooning?

Sandman 8:32 pm 31 Aug 12

Ex Warrior said :

Sandman said :

Skidd Marx said :

I made the mistake of driving the length of this street the other day with a takeaway coffee in my hand. At the max allowable speed of 25 kph or so I thought it would never end. Needless to say the coffee cup was empty by the end of it without a single drop having graced my tongue.

Everyone loses with speedhumps… sorry – speedcushions.

Oh the humanity! So not only did you loose 20 seconds of your life by having to travel at or below the speed limit but you were also robbed of your mobile caffeine intake by the obviously chai drinking beauracracy that is the ACT government?
If hospital wait times weren’t so inconveniently long I’d get this bleeding heart of mine looked at.

I think somebodies missing the point!!!

If the Chief is bragging about the zero level of accidents on this horror mil or 2, it may be that a young fella lost his life on Southern Cross due to the increased volume of traffic as a result of this mindless decision to divert traffic away from wide & straight roads which to me seem ideal to ease pressure on Southern Cross.

Was the young fella who lost his life on southern cross hit by someone DRIVING WITH A TAKEAWAY COFFEE IN THEIR HAND? (intentionally shouted so you don’t miss the point)

farq 6:19 pm 31 Aug 12

I took a empty trailer down that road and it was a nightmare.

Even at 20kph the trailer was bouncing up dangerously. It’s not an ideal solution.

Ex Warrior 3:02 pm 31 Aug 12

Sandman said :

Skidd Marx said :

I made the mistake of driving the length of this street the other day with a takeaway coffee in my hand. At the max allowable speed of 25 kph or so I thought it would never end. Needless to say the coffee cup was empty by the end of it without a single drop having graced my tongue.

Everyone loses with speedhumps… sorry – speedcushions.

Oh the humanity! So not only did you loose 20 seconds of your life by having to travel at or below the speed limit but you were also robbed of your mobile caffeine intake by the obviously chai drinking beauracracy that is the ACT government?
If hospital wait times weren’t so inconveniently long I’d get this bleeding heart of mine looked at.

I think somebodies missing the point!!!

If the Chief is bragging about the zero level of accidents on this horror mil or 2, it may be that a young fella lost his life on Southern Cross due to the increased volume of traffic as a result of this mindless decision to divert traffic away from wide & straight roads which to me seem ideal to ease pressure on Southern Cross.

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