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Legislative Assembly for the ACT: 1999 Week 2 Hansard (11 March) . . Page.. 642 ..

Dennis Street, Garran - Traffic

MR CORBELL (5.50): Mr Speaker, I rise in the adjournment debate this evening to raise an issue of concern to residents in Dennis Street, Garran. I was contacted earlier this week by a number of residents who live in that street and they indicated to me then that the Department of Urban Services is proposing to remove a traffic calming measure installed at one end of their street. I understand that the residents have had a number of discussions with the Minister's office about this matter and with officials of his department. I rise in the debate today because I was informed today, having visited the site earlier today and spoken to one of the residents concerned, that the department is proposing to remove the traffic calming measure next Tuesday. I urge the Minister for Urban Services to reconsider his department's decision.

Residents of Dennis Street have been subjected to a lot of traffic travelling along their street as a short cut to Hindmarsh Drive. That issue is one of legitimate concern to residents in that street and they are concerned that the removal of the traffic calming measure will lead to a restoration of the previous levels of traffic. The installation of the traffic calming measure, I am told and having viewed the data that the residents themselves have obtained from the Department of Urban Services, shows quite clearly that there has been a significant reduction in vehicle movements and a reasonable reduction in the speed of vehicles travelling along their street. They live on a normal suburban street with a 60 kilometres an hour speed limit.

Mr Speaker, I would ask that the Minister review his decision to remove the traffic calming measure. I understand that the department has undertaken a survey to seek the views of residents in that suburb. The residents of Dennis Street and the accompanying streets have indicated to me that they have some concerns with how the department has interpreted the findings of that survey. They have walked around a number of the streets affected and have indicated to the Minister that they believe that his survey is not the most effective or representative one in relation to their specific area of concern.

I think it is only appropriate that the Minister not proceed with the removal of that traffic calming measure until at least there is an opportunity for other options to be considered as alternatives. If the department believes that the traffic calming measure on Dennis Street is not the most appropriate course of action for controlling traffic movements, I would urge them to do something else before removing it. I understand that the only proposal at the moment is to put in place a sign saying, "Local Traffic Area", instead of the traffic calming measure. Clearly, a sign is not going to deter a vehicle from taking a short cut along Dennis Street to get to Hindmarsh Drive, nor is it necessarily going to result in people slowing down. Clearly, the traffic calming measure has achieved those outcomes and I think it is appropriate that the Minister investigate other options before simply removing this measure and, basically, taking the street back to the circumstances it was in before the calming measure was first installed.

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