In December 2012 Roads ACT collected feedback from residents of Holt and Macgregor and the wider community about issues of concern on Messenger Street, Trickett Street and Beaurepaire Crescent. Key areas of concern identified by the community included speeding, increased traffic volumes, “rat running” through the suburb and intersection safety issues.
A technical traffic analysis confirmed some of these issues. Average speeds are above the 50 km/h speed limit on all three roads and 85% of motorists travel at around 60 km/h or below. These speeds have been excessive even before the speed cushions were installed on Spofforth Street. Traffic volumes on Beaurepaire Crescent and Trickett Street are also high but still within acceptable limits for the road environment.
Hence traffic calming is being considered for these roads to reduce travelling speeds, discourage “rat-running”, improve safety at intersections and reduce traffic volumes.
Whilst traffic volumes have increased on Messenger Street, Trickett Street and Beaurepaire Crescent since the implementation of the measures on Spofforth Street, they are still within the acceptable limits of such streets. However, traffic speeds on these streets are well in excess of their 50 km/h speed limit and these conditions existed even before the works on Spofforth Street. It is now clear from public consultation to date that many residents of these streets consider that traffic calming measures should also be implemented on these streets.
Traffic calming treatments proposed are:
Photos of these treatments are shown below:
Lane narrowing with linemarking
The results of the earlier community consultation (in December 2012) and the technical analysis of traffic data indicated that high speeds are a safety concern on these roads. It is necessary to place physical devices on the road in order to reduce speeds all day, every day (24/7).
Different devices serve different purposes and have different levels of effectiveness. The aim of all devices, however, is to reduce travelling speeds and encourage “rat runners” to use the surrounding arterial roads. The proposed devices also reflect preferences received from residents living along these roads and the wider community.
The aim of the traffic calming devices is to reduce speeding and make the roads less attractive for “rat runners”, thus encouraging them to use the surrounding arterial roads. There may, however, still be some motorists who will continue to “rat run” along these roads.
Your views are important and all feedback received has been considered in the development of the traffic calming schemes. Option 1 is based on the treatments supported by the majority of respondents, while Option 2 includes the devices supported by residents of Messenger Street, Trickett Street and Beaurepaire Crescent.
This study is assessing the traffic conditions on Messenger Street, Trickett Street and Beaurepaire Crescent, and does not incorporate the traffic calming scheme on Spofforth Street.
Following the review of the traffic calming scheme on Spofforth Street in July 2012, the ACT Government agreed to retain the treatment on Spofforth Street, but with some modifications to address feedback from the community. These modifications included the removal of two sets of speed cushions, and were completed in December 2012.
No. The speed cushions will be located at key strategic points on the road. Please see the concept plan for locations of proposed speed cushions on Messenger Street and Trickett Street.
Traffic noise may slightly increase just before and after the speed cushions. However, this increased noise level is expected to be within acceptable limits and less than the tyre noise generated from speeding vehicles.
No. The speed cushions will not damage any ‘street legal’ vehicles that drive over them at appropriate speeds.
No. The speed cushions will be specifically designed to minimise any impact on emergency vehicles and allow the passage of emergency vehicles without major disruptions. Roads ACT has not received any concerns/complaints to date from Emergency Services Authority about similar measures on other streets elsewhere in Canberra.
Traffic calming devices have the potential to enhance the amenity of the local area through a reduction in traffic speed and traffic volumes, and an increased safety of the road environment.
They can, but the proposed measures are part of an area wide traffic calming study which seeks to improve the road environment for users and minimise the possibility of “rat running” to surrounding streets.
No, they will not block driveways and other accesses. All traffic calming devices will be appropriately designed in accordance with the relevant standards and guidelines, with the primary aim of slowing traffic speeds and improving safety for all road users.
Enforcement by speed cameras or police presence is only effective at the point and/or time of operation. In contrast, traffic calming measures provide continuous all-day speed control to most vehicles using the street, and are therefore effective on a 24/7 basis.
Current ACT government policy is that fixed speed cameras are only used on arterial roads, and there is no intention to introduce them on residential streets.
The mobile speed camera program focuses on the non-arterial network. However, enforcement by mobile speed cameras is again only effective at the point and time of operation, and high speeds on Spofforth Street occurred despite regular enforcement by ACT Policing and the mobile speed camera vans.
The traffic calming measures will be funded through Roads ACT’s Residential Street Improvement Program.
Following this round of consultation, recommendations will be considered by Government. The determination of a final scheme for improvement will take into account the results of the technical analysis of traffic data and the views of residents of each street as well as that of the wider community.
It is expected that the community will be informed of the final scheme for improvement in May/June 2013.
It is likely a staged implementation will be necessary over the coming years due to annual budgetary constraints. It is anticipated that the first stage of construction will commence in 2013/14.
Research and experience indicate that the placement of traffic calming measures usually results in reduced speeds, traffic volumes and enhanced safety. On the other hand, some vehicles are distributed elsewhere on the road network, some travel trips become slightly longer and traffic noise is slightly increased in the vicinity of such devices. Such treatments are a trade-off between these impacts and outcomes, as well as between safety and convenience. Roads ACT recognises these impacts but also understands the importance the community places on, and responds to the community’s request for, a safer road and a slower speed environment.