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Long term Council experience. Councillor for over 20 years. Deputy Mayor for 3 years.
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(written & authorised by Bob Schnell, 10 Halmon Avenue, Everard Park SA 5035)
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Minister, Wayville residents oppose U-turns
U-turns on Greenhill Road has Wayville residents hot under the collar.
A resident has forwarded me a letter sent to the Minister for Transport and asked that I add it to my blog. Here's the letter.
Dear Minister Mullighan,
We are long term residents of Wayville and we are most concerned about the current DPTI proposals regarding so-called safety improvements to Greenhill Road, because of the adverse effects on residents and users of the road.
First, we are concerned that these proposals are being foisted on residents with no proper consultation process and with no detailed assessment of their feasibility, particularly with regard to improving safety. The proposal seems to be a formulaic response - 'it worked somewhere else, it will work here'- and no on the ground analysis has been done. For example, the latest (2nd) plan released, marked final, by DPTI shows an added 3rd lane, near Sir Lewis Cohen Drive, to make U turns possible for traffic travelling east. A visit to the area shows that there is no space to put in a 3rd lane (the median strip is too narrow) and to do so would present drivers with a dangerous situation in completing the turn across the eastbound lanes of Greenhill Road. It is inappropriate in this email to provide you with a myriad of other examples, suffice it to say there are many such evidence based criticisms of the plan, which we (and others) have detailed in submissions to DPTI (some of these can be found at http://www.bobschnell. blogspot.com .au - see 'Wayville residents angry').
Second, the so-called consultation with residents is so inadequate, as to be dismissive and insulting. At the first meeting, the clear focus was to tell us what would happen and not listen to our comments, which were constructive, but opposed to the plans as presented. We were invited to put in submissions, which many of us did, but it is evident little attention was paid to these when the final plan was published a few days ago. Now there is a 2nd meeting scheduled for 14th April, to present us with the final plan - a fait accomplis, that is both unsatisfactory, unsafe and clearly adversely affects residents.
As SA residents and taxpayers we expect our state entities to produce an expert, evidence-based solution to traffic problems. There is too much sloppy thinking involved in the development of the current plans and too much heavy handed treatment of the residents. We are people who use Greenhill Road several times a day, and know the problems that increasing traffic flows are causing. It is this experience that needs to be harnessed to enhance the planning process. What works in one place may well not work in another. Steam -rollering the plans through is not the answer.
Finally, an analysis of the accident statistics, on which the DPTI changes claim to be based, raises serious questions about whether the junctions being changed actually qualify for 'black spot' funding since the number of accidents is less than specified for such funding. Nevertheless, DPTI intends these plans to be executed in May, regardless of the consequences on overall safety and, particularly on the hapless residents of Wayville, whose voices are being ignored. This could be a complete waste of funding, to no useful purpose. We stress we are not against changes to improve traffic safety on Greenhill Road, which are of great importance as flows increase. However, we feel that the DPTI plans are not the solution and that a more in-depth analysis is required, including consultation with users, and the introduction of simple measures, such as improving sight lines at junctions and restricting parking outside of clearway hours. In conclusion, we urge you to intervene in this highly unsatisfactory process with the aim of ensuring any changes that are made will benefit all users of Greenhill road, including the residents of neighbouring suburbs. (from Jeff and Ann C)