Safety fears

A MELVILLE resident says plans to put parking bays on Jackson Avenue for a new housing development at the local shopping centre is too risky.

Max Fitzgibbon says it will put pedestrians and cyclists at risk, as there’s little room on the verge between the footpath and the cycling lane.

“I am confounded as to how such a proposal by a developer gets to be presented to the public in a City of Melville engagement,” Mr Fitzgibbon said.

“The proposition is a significant degradation of the prevailing safety and sightlines for pedestrians, cyclists and motorists.”

Recently the peak organisation for traffic agencies, Ausroads, released new traffic safety guidelines specifically for local governments, saying they carry more than their fair share of crashes compared to state-controlled roads.

• Max Fitzgibbon says there’s not much room left for pedestrians or cyclists if parking bays are installed along Jackson Ave.

The author of the report, Paul Durdin, said a wider variety of road environments to deal with was a factor, but he also pointed out “this is compounded when local councils have few if any dedicated road staff”.

Noting Ausroads’ upgrade, Mr Fitzgibbon says the council’s technical staff need to sign off on road safety issues before proposals are put out for public consultation.

The development will see 34 apartments in a four- to five-storey complex lining Jackson Avenue and a portion of Hatherley Parade.]

Melville CEO Marten Tieleman said safety was a priority and the applicant had been asked for new plans that complied with Austroad’s standards.

“In line with the City’s Road Safety Audit Policy, a road safety audit on the design will also be required by an independent senior road Safety auditor to ensure the proposed design is safe for all road users,” Mr Tieleman said.  

“The City has also been reviewing traffic and speed data for the relevant stretch of Jackson Avenue to confirm the road is functioning as required in order to accommodate the proposed embayed parking without prejudice.”

by STEVE GRANT

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