Melbourne City Council’s Show Trial increments up a notch

The Melbourne City Council voted to make the Princes Bridge Bike lane a permanent feature following a report of false and misleading statements by City Engineer Geoff Robertson.

Mr Robinson in his report claimed that waiting times for traffic to cross Princes Bridge had increased by only 45 second and that there were no reports of Cyclist accidents due to car dooring.A fact that is not surprising given that cars do not park on Princes Bridge and are not expected to open their doors into mid coming bicycle traffic.

The City Council undertook a select serious of   time testing on Tuesday through to Thursday to determine the impact of the Bike Lane on City Traffic during the morning and afternoon peak periods.  They left off Monday, Friday’s and weekend statistics as they would have distorted statistics included in the Council report. Friday being the heaviest traffic day of the week.

Missing from the report was information on traffic volumes before and after the lane closure. 

There number of cars exciting into Flinders Street per traffic light cycle had decreased from 22 down to 17 engineering congestion of 20%.  Whilst the movement of traffic across the bridge may be 45 second to one minute longer this does not include the time spent stuck in quest that are extending back to Dorcus Street during the peak traffic period.

The report also failed to make mention of the other peak traffic periods along St Kilda Road most notably the lunch time period from 12Noon to 2PM and the late night evening peaks on Friday and Saturday Nights. Where traffic crossing Princes Bridge comes to a crawl taking in excess of 10 minutes travel time. What the City Engineers failed to list is that there are no bikes using the Princes Bridge Bike lane at this time.  Congestion without bikes.

Safety issues left out

Geoff Robinson’s report failed to list or mention safety concerns about the design of the bike lane at the South-Eastern corner of Flinders Street Station  where traffic de-merges from the single lane into two lanes.  With cyclists failing to dismount  whilst using the adjacent pedestrian crossing and the limited space for cyclists to travel.

This site is an accident waiting to happen.

Council’s war on horses

Geoff Robinson in his presentation attacked Melbourne’s  award winning Horse and Carriage operators complaining that the horse and carriages were using the bike lane instead of traveling in the single lane set aside for vehicular traffic. Geoff Robinson wants Victoria Police to monitor and fine the horse and carriages for travelling in the bike lane

If the horse and carriages traveled in the main traffic lanes we can expect more congestion and further waiting time delays.  The Horse and Carriages operate from 2PM until midnight most days and in the evening the bike lanes are empty.

On occasions when the horse and carriages stuck to the main traffic lanes frustrated drivers drove into the bike lane to pass the carriages on their left. A situation which would be much more dangerous then allowing the horse and carriages to use the less congested bike lanes.

Motorcyclists and Scooter riders

Earlier in response to Motorcyclist and Scooter riders safety concerns, the City Council gave an undertaking to list and include the impact of motorcyclist  in Councils reports.  Geoff Robinson has reneged on this undertaking and there was not mention or impact of motorcyclists in the published report. Motorcyclists, who are vulnerable road users, also want to be able to use the bike lane to safety pass traffic and consistently have complained that the City of Melbourne has ignored their concerns.

Haig Pulson, Senior City Engineer, previously indicated that the width of the Princes Bride traffic lane would be increased to 4.1 metres allowing room motorcyclists to filter though traffic.  Contrary to the undertaking given the width of the traffic lane has been pegged back to just 3.45 metres which does not allow sufficient room for motorcyclists to safely pass.

 Push for the Southern side to be reduced to a single lane

The City Council is now embarked on a campaign to further engineer congestion  and close down a lane of traffic on the Southern bound side of the bridge so as to be able to remove speeding cyclist from sharing the foot path.  

A lane closure on the Southern bound side of Princes Bridge would be much harder to implement and is opposed by the State Government Vic Roads.  Most of the traffic in Flinders Street turns left into Swanston Street to travel South., To reduce the number of lanes from two to one would  have a rippling effect causing major congestion and gridlock though-out the city.  Before Council can contemplate traffic lane closures they would have to reduce the number of cars traveling along Flinders Street turning left into Swanston Street.  

Alternative Options

The best solution would be to close St Kilda Road/Princes Bridge/Swanston Street to non essential traffic allowing Taxis, Motorbikes, Buses and trams only but there is no viable alternative for cars wishing to travel from the Southern side of the City into and from the City Centre currently in place.

One option that has not been considered by the Council’s Traffic management has been the use of Bateman Avenue near the Tennis Centre  that links up to Exhibition Street. Bateman Avenue is underutilized and and only serves as a exit point for cars wishing to use the toll way to access the Monash Freeway.  It’s inbound South North traffic is minimal.

The Council, in consultation with Vic Roads and Trans Urban -City Link who manage the Bateman Ave toll way, should be looking at upgrading the Swan Street Bridge or building a new bridge that crosses the Yarra river allowing traffic to link up with Linithgow Avenue on the Southern side of the river.  Providing an alternative traffic connection would address all concerns and allow for the restricted closure of Swanston Street Princess Bridge connection.

Green’s Council Cathy Oake, who chairs the Council Transport Portfolio, indicated last night that the Council had not yet considered this option even though it has been talked about for decades.

Leppert wants Horse and Carriages out of Princes Bridge Bike Lane blocking traffic


Melbourne Green Councillor Rohan Leppert wants Melbourne’s Horse and Carriages banned from using the Princes Bridge Bike Lane forcing them into using the single traffic lane that crosses the Yarra river.

Worst part is lack of adherence to road rules by Horse Drawn Vehicles. Illegal to travel in bike lane but many still do – dangerous. — Rohan Leppert (@RohanLeppert) July 31, 2013

In Rohan Leppert’s mind the interests of cyclists come first and all others, with the exception of members of Occupy Melbourne and residents of North Melbourne, a distant second.

The Horse and Carriages travel at the speed of 6km per hour.  To force them into the traffic lane particularly during peak hour traffic or at night when the bike lane is empty would cause more congestion on an already congested road.

The proposed St Kilda Rd Bike Lane will force Horse and Carriages into the main traffic lane again blocking traffic.  Horse and Carriages are a legitimate means of transport that run on bio fuel and have every right to use the roads. By using the bike lane they allow traffic, which is already congested as a result of the Princes Bridge lane closure to flow.   When the Horse and Carriages used the main traffic lane motorist opted instead to enter into the bike lane to pass the carriage. Something they are allowed to do up to 50 metres under current road rules.  A situation which would be more disruptive and unsafe for cyclists.  Solution allow Horse and Carriages to use the bike lane.

Horse and Carriages is another problem identified with the proposed St Kilda Rd 350m bike lane.  Horse and Carriage operators never consulted over the proposed design nor were a number of other stakeholders including Motorcycle and Scooter riders not consulted. With up to 12 Horse and Carriage operators in the City using the St Kilda Rd/Gardens route one of the St Kilda Road traffic lanes will be blocked. Greens solution ban horse and carriages and cars.

City of Melbourne Failing to Learn from the Mistakes of the recent past

The City of Melbourne is about to commence work on installing LaTrobe Street style bike path along a section of St Kilda Road.   The proposal will involve a removal of one lane of traffic and the construction of a concrete separation barriers costing an estimated $330,000. ($1000 a metre)

Council  Engineering Services claims that the new bike path is needed to improve cyclist safety.

Experience on the Latrobe Street bicycle paths indicates that public safety has not improved instead motorist are  forced into opening doors into moving traffic and passengers safety alighting from parked vehicles is at risk. Particularly the elderly or disabled who park in this section of St Kilda Road to access the Art Gallery and nearby parkland.

Whilst we see no problems in removing a lane of traffic (there are currently three lanes along St Kilda Road) there is no need to install concrete island separation barriers.

Separation barriers do not work. They are an eye saw, look tacky, and would seriously detract from the heritage street scape on St Kilda Road.  Gaps are required to be left in between the concrete sections to allow for drainage during period of heavy rain and flooding.  These gaps collect rubbish and add to the public safety risk.  How the City Council managed to get the approval from urban designers and the city heritage consultants is beyond belief. (Nothing surprises us when it comes to Rob Adams Urban design standards. Rob Adams once proposed building balconies above Victorian Heritage verandahs totally destroying Melbourne’s heritage street-scape.)

A better and much cheaper option is to widen the existing bike path and delineate it from parked cars by line marking as is the case in Clarendon Street East Melbourne.   This would allow sufficient room for cyclists to pass without entering in to the parked car door zone and for the same cost could be extended past the Shine up to Domain Road and beyond. They could also apply the same treatment to the other side adjacent to the Art Gallery and Concert Hall giving ratepayers more value for their dollar.

The current City Council has not voted on the proposal, The decision to go ahead with the Engineering folly was decided under delegation behind closed doors with the blessing and support of the Lord Mayor, Robert Doyle.

According to Vicroads data less than 2,000 cyclists use St Kilda Rd per day.

The proposed engineering works will not extend the full length of St Kilda Road only the section between Princess Bridge and Linlithgow Avenue just past the floral clock

Engineering work is expected to commence on
August 5

Princes Bridge Traffic Chaos.

Morning traffic on Sta Kilda Road and Princes Bridge was pure mayhem following the City of Melbourne decision to close down Princes Bridge to one lane. Traffic banked up St Kilda Road past the Art Galley back to Grant Street and beyond.

The City of Melbourne has placed its spin on the first day of lane closures on Princes Bridge with a false claim that the transition went well.  To the contrary…

An estimated 500 to 600 bikes travelled over Princes Bride in the morning and then dropped off with very few bikes counted in the mid afternoon.  The bike lane remaining void of bicycle traffic most of the time.

Cyclists safety was at risk at the North end of the Bridge where the lane narrows as cars enter the two lane queuing bay before Flinders Street with most cars turning right into Flinders Street.

The two lane holding bay was half empty, with only one lane of traffic feeding the turning bay it was unable to fill up before traffic was stopped by traffic lights. Either the City Council has not updated traffic signals or their modelling was seriously flawed.

The Melbourne Tourist bus reporting that it took twice as long to cross the bridge then normal.

Melbourne City Council Engineers were out and about monitoring the situation.

Engineering Services Manager Geoff Robinson look on and turned a blind eye to numerous cyclist crossing Swanston Street from Batman Av.Princes Walk to travelling north using the pedestrian crossing without first dismounting, placing pedestrian safety at risk.

 Traffic congestion in one lane whilst Bike lane remains free of bikes.

 Holding bay left half vacant as one lane is unable to fill it within the regulating traffic light cycle

 Police called by City Engineers, City of Melbourne misuse of CCTV

Police Van blocking Bike lane at point in the road where traffic enters the holding bay

Cyclist ignoring traffic signals

 City Engineers survey the situation

Cyclists illegal crossing at pedestrian lights 

 Pedestrians safety placed at risk

 Cyclist travelling at full speed at pedestrian crossing failed to dismount. Police turn a blind eye as do City Engineers

 Engineering Services Manager Geoff Robinson looks on

 Truck cuts into bike lane at Northern end of Princes Bridge where it enters the holding turning bay

 Holding turning bay left half vacant

 Taxis forced into road safety point where two lanes merge into one 

Midday traffic congestion. Bike lane void of bikes

Decision on Princes Bridge made under a cloak of secrecy

Melbourne City Council Lord Mayor and Councillors failed to consult on the decision to close down a lane on princes Bridge.

Councillors Stephen Mayne, Jackie Watts and Richard Foster and the Greens claim to be advocates for open transparent government yet on this and many other issues issue they have failed to ensure decisions of council were made in open session.

Questions have been raised to the legality of the decision making process as decisions of Council are supposed to be made in open Council. It appears that controversial decisions are being made under delegation following consideration at closed session Councillor Forms, locking out members of the public, where councillors give a nod and a wink and the decision is made.
 
No opportunity for public comment on thee proposal which will see access to the city restricted.  Residents South of the Yarra who are effected the most were not consulted.

If the issue appears in the Council budget papers then it is assumed that approval has been given.

Act of bad faith – Council credibility with the community at an all time low.

The Council’s budget papers indicated that the decision to build the bike lane was not possible before June 30 end of financial year.

Having deceived the public the Council held a serious of closed session and a decision has been made to announce the lane closure under the disguise of a “trial” . 

Just last week the City Council engineers, Haig Poulson and Geoff Robertson had met with representatives of the Motorcyclist and Scooter riders association to discuss the road safety issues that had not been addressed by the City Council. Motorcyclists and Scooter riders had been left out of the Council Transport Strategy plan.,  The Council gave an undertaking that it would develop a traffic strategy plan similar to the Council’s Bike plane to look at issues of concern related to motorcycle scooter riders. In addition Haig Poulson undertook to before implementing any traffic engineering modification.  In less than two weeks the Council reneged on its undertaking and pushed ahead with the Princes Bridge proposal, a proposal that will impact on road users, motorcycle and scooter riders in particular.  Motorcycles safety is also at risk and they want equal access to many of the City’s bike lanes that are underutilized and in many cases empty.

Urban Designers and Engineers: Losing the plot

Melbourne City Council has lost the plot.  Our Urban designers (Headed by Rob “Bamboo” Adams) and Engineers (Headed by Geoffrey Robinson) are slowly yet consistently destroying Melbourne and the things that make Melbourne.

The rot started back in 1996 when the Council back-down and supported the shift of Melbourne’s Museum from the City Centre to the Carlton Gardens. A move that was widely opposed by the general community. (The Museum should have been built as part of an expanded Federation Square or on the ill-fated CUB Swanston Street site)

Residents and traders managed to save Lygon Street from the destructive designs of Rob Adams who wanted to build balconies over the top of Lygon Streets Victorian Street Verandahs. (The City of Melbourne may still revisit Rob Adams nightmare on Lygon Street as the adopted Verandah policy has been allowed to slip out of sight and was not listed or included in Melbourne recent heritage review).

They just spent $5Million engineering congestion and reducing the number of traffic lanes in LaTrobe Street and now they have their sight on destroying the Queen Victoria Market extending Franklin Street so that it carves through the market car park and connects up with Duddly Street, increasing traffic where it is most definitely not needed.  Franklin Street should have been the new bike path and the precinct  should be encouraged to accommodate more pedestrian traffic.  If they had of channeled the money spent on LatTrobe street into Franklin Street redevelopment it could have made a positive contribution to Melbourne.

Clearly Road Safety is not on the Council’s agenda.  The other end of Franklin Street at the corner of Victoria Street is one of the busiest pedestrian intersections in Melbourne and a major accident hotspot. Channeling vehicle traffic down from Duddly Street down Franklin linking up to Victoria Street will only make this intersection worst.  The Council need to close Franklin Street between Swanston and Victoria Street and hand it over to RMIT to allow it to flow into the area and link in with the City Baths.

It is as if Rob Adams and Geoff Robinson are hell bent on destroying Hoddle’s Grid in what ever way they can.  The have extended Collins Street, tried to extend Bourke Street (In name alone) and turned LatTrobe street into a lane with dangerous cross street intersections.

The proposed Queen Victoria Market Franklin Street extension is their “piece de resistance” of utter stupidity in urban design and planning.

Road Safety Plan: "SHARE THE ROAD" STOP Engineering Congestion


The Lord Mayor and Councillors
City of Melbourne
Dear Lord Mayor and Councillors
Further to the decision last night to defer the adoption of the proposed City of Melbourne Road Safety Plan.
I request that the City of Melbourne publish on line in full all submissions made by stakeholders, not just an edited summary.  Such a practice is standard in the consideration of State Parliamentary Committee submissions and allows all members of the public to view the issues raised whilst maintaining public confidence in the consultation process.
Council should provide a process and  further opportunity for public debate on the use and development of the City’s Road Network.
The City of Melbourne should also seek input and submissions from Melbourne’s Emergency Services (Ambulance and Fire brigade) as to the impact of road safety plans, proposals and traffic lane restrictions.
I note with great concern that the Victorian Ambulance and Metropolitan Fire-brigade were not included in the initial Road Safety consultation 
Motorcycle and Scooter riders are at an equal if not greater risk of safety to bicycle riders. The proposals put forward by the City of Melbourne in the draft report do not address Motorcycle and Scooter riders Road Safety issues.  The ill-considered establishment of “Bike” Lanes that exclude access to Motorised Two wheel vehicles (Motorcycles and Scooters) and the associated displacement and congestion that results compounds the Road Safety Risk.
Further consideration needs to be given as to the opportunities of sharing bike lanes through-out Melbourne.  Many lanes are underutilized and could be used to facilitate a safe travel environment for Motorcyclist and Scooter riders. The two modes of transport are not exclusive and can safely coexist under many circumstances and appropriate regulatory guidelines and protocols put in place. Not all bicycle paths are suited for sharing but many are. 
The City Council needs to discuss and identify those lanes were both modes of transport can be accommodated.
The City Council should consider as a matter of priority alternative routes for Cyclist pathways throughout the city with preference given to less congested roads and laneways. Consider for lane reductions should only be given as a last resort and only after extensive consultation with all stakeholders and public approval.
The provision of “Lane Filtering” options at inner city intersections that allow motorcycles and scooter riders to move to the front of the intersection to a safe zone and take advantage of a controlled early start as is currently afforded to bicyclists riders.
The Council’s Transport Strategy plan and road network design needs to be reviewed to take into consideration the needs of all road users.
In addition: I request that the council consider the following additional issues of concern to help improve motorcycle/Scooter Riders  (MSRs) Road Safety
  • Shared Bus Lanes (Higher priority)
  • Shared “Bike” paths (Based on a Bike Lane category system – High Priority)
  • Bicycle “Bike” paths to be encouraged to use smaller less congested streets not major road feeders.
  • Lane Filtering options at intersections (High Priority)
  • Turn left at any time with care rights to reduce congestion and increase traffic flow (High Priority)
  • Road Line Paint that is not slippery (Medium Priority)
  • More attention on pavement surface quality to avoid overlay ridges (High Priority)
  • Advocate for Rear Vision Cameras to be made mandatory on van/trucks and buses/trams where central rear vision mirrors are not available.
  • A public education program to encourage cars to check their stop lights and turning signals regularly
  • Look and signal before turning when in the city signs to be erected in hot spots thought the City
  • The undertaking of a series of independent “Stress testing” reviews of site access and transit times for emergency vehicles thought out the city at various peak congestion/travel times
I look forward to the opportunity to discuss further in more detail the above and other issues related to the City of Melbourne’s proposed Road Safety Plan
Should you require further information I can be contacted via email
Anthony van der Craats
Scooter rider/Resident
South Yarra
Cc Media.. Members of Victorian State Parliament, Victorian Minister and Shadow Minister of Roads

RACV – CoM has got it wrong

 Source – The Age – Jason Dowling

Melbourne City Council has got it wrong with a new road safety plan that focuses on more protection for pedestrians, cyclists and motorcyclists and cycling lanes on Princes Bridge, the RACV says.
But Victoria’s peak motoring body denied it was anti-bike after opposing three big cycling upgrades in the city in recent years – separate bike lanes on Albert and La Trobe streets and the loss of traffic lanes on Princes Bridge to make way for bike paths.

RACV public policy manager Brian Negus said it was unnecessary to remove traffic lanes for bike lanes and the council should instead be removing street parking.

It is very important when looking at on-road bicycle facilities that the needs of all road users are properly considered. That includes those in cars, trucks, buses and trams, and cyclists and pedestrians,” he said.
 ”That is the principle that has probably been neglected by the Melbourne City Council, both in what they have looked at in their road safety strategy, and secondly in the context of the three [recent] bicycle proposals.”

He said Albert Street was done on the cheap and was an ”anti-car proposal” that looked ”absolutely dreadful”.

The RACV operates the Melbourne Bike Share scheme, and supported the bike-friendly upgrade of Swanston Street.

Mr Negus said the lobby group also supported removing traffic on Elizabeth Street between Bourke and Flinders streets.

We certainly have promoted the need for safe bicycle facilities, both off road and on road,” he said.
Garry Brennan, spokesman for Bicycle Network Victoria, said ”the spectacular success of central Melbourne as a pedestrian and bicycle-dense CBD caught many people and organisations by surprise and they are having trouble adapting to this new, thriving city reality”.

With the RACV it’s a case of the shock of the new. In a few years’ time they will be wondering what all the fuss was about,” he said.

Melbourne council’s new road safety plan aims to make the city more pedestrian and cyclist- friendly.

Council’s Road Safety Plan placed on hold pending review

Melbourne City Council yesterday deferred, at the request of representatives of Melbourne’s Motorcycle and Scooter Riders’ Associations. The adoption of the City of Melbourne Road Safety Plan amidst concern that the report and the consultation process was flawed and lacking public confidence.

Representatives of Melbourne’s four main Motorcycle and Scooter Riders Associations, representing over 380,000 members, called on the Council to deffer the report so as to allow for more consideration of the needs of motorcycle and scooter rider’s safety concerns.

Spokesperson for the Motorbike and Scooter riders said “The Council report included a number of mother hood statements and lacked causing on the needs of pedestrians and bicyclists but ignore concerns of two wheel power riders and other road users

Community activist and scooter rider, Anthony van der Craats, said that “The City Council was “Engineering Congestion” and that the city was making road safety worst as a result.  There is a need to stop and review the impact of the Council’s Transport Strategy plan so that all road users were given equal consideration“.

The Lord Mayor, Robert Doyle, also expressed concern that report did not include in a holistic manner consideration of other road users such as cars, trucks and vans, all which need to consulted.

Emergency Access Restricted

Mr van der Craats said “The Road Safety Report also failed to consult Emergency Services such as the Metropolitan Fire Brigade and Ambulance Victoria“.

During question time Mr van der Craats expressed his condolence for Melbourne’s Sister City Boston and the Terrorist attacks that were carried out earlier in the day.

These tragic events raised concern as to Melbourne’s preparedness for such emergencies.  There is growing concern recent road works and  engineering restrictions in the City may have an adverse impact on the response time of Emergency Vehicles in the City. 

Mr van der craats called on the City of Melbourne as part of is Road Safety Strategy to undertake a serious of Stress Testing involving the emergency services to ensure that the city engineering services do not prevent or hinder emergency service response times.   “There is ongoing concern that an event such as what occurred in Boston today could be a disaster if Firetrucks and Ambulances were not able to pass trams blocking the major transit routes. The  new Super Stops and bicycle paths in particular constitute a real risk to public safety

Councillor Richard Foster earlier today reported that he will not be supporting the reduction of traffic lanes on Princess Bridge from two lanes to one.

Princess Bridge is a major access route to the City and the nearby Alfred Emergency Critical Care Hospital.  A reduction in vehicular access could have serious impact on Ambulance response times and could conceivable cost lives.
 
The fact that the City of Melbourne had not consulted our emergency services or reviewed their needs was a major oversight.

The City Engineers proposal to create further congestion on Princes Bridge  has been rejected by the RACV, VicRoads and other community groups.

Victoria’ Premier, Dr Napthine, on Radio 3AW Neil Mitchel earlier this week, cast doubt over the proposal following overwhelming community rejection.

Mr van der Craats said “There is no support other than from Council Engineers and the Green Bicycle Lobby group.  The State Government must rain in the City Council and put an end to the Congestion creation strategy pursued by the Greens”.

Community representatives will meet with Opposition Spokesperson Luke Donellan to seek his support in stopping this ill-considered proposal

The Engineering Services Director, Geoff Robinson, has until July 9 to address stakeholder concerns and present a workable and accepted Road Traffic proposal

Council’s Road Safety Plan placed on hold pending review

Melbourne City Council tonight deferred, at the request of stakeholders, the adoption of the City of Melbourne Road Safety Plan amidst concern that the report and the consultation process was flawed and lacking public confidence.

Representatives of Melbourne’s four main Motorcycle and Scooter Riders Associations, representing over 380,000 members, called on the Council to deffer the report so as to allow for more consideration of the needs of motorcycle and scooter rider’s safety concerns.

Spokesperson for the Motorbike and Scooter riders said “The Council report included a number of mother hood statements and lacked causing on the needs of pedestrians and bicyclists but ignore concerns of two wheel power riders and other road users

Community activist and scooter rider, Anthony van der Craats, said that “The City Council was “Engineering Congestion” and that the city was making road safety worst as a result.  There is a need to stop and review the impact of the Council’s Transport Strategy plan so that all road users were given equal consideration“.

The Lord Mayor, Robert Doyle, also expressed concern that report did not include in a holistic manner consideration of other road users such as cars, trucks and vans, all which need to consulted.

Emergency Access Restricted

Mr van der Craats said “The Road Safety Report also failed to consult Emergency Services such as the Metropolitan Fire Brigade and Ambulance Victoria“.

During question time Mr van der Craats expressed his condolence for Melbourne’s Sister City Boston and the Terrorist attacks that were carried out earlier in the day.

These tragic events raised concern as to Melbourne’s preparedness for such emergencies.  There is growing concern recent road works and  engineering restrictions in the City may have an adverse impact on the response time of Emergency Vehicles in the City. 

Mr van der craats called on the City of Melbourne as part of is Road Safety Strategy to undertake a serious of Stress Testing involving the emergency services to ensure that the city engineering services do not prevent or hinder emergency service response times.   “There is ongoing concern that an event such as what occurred in Boston today could be a disaster if Firetrucks and Ambulances were not able to pass trams blocking the major transit routes. The  new Super Stops and bicycle paths in particular constitute a real risk to public safety

Councillor Richard Foster earlier today reported that he will not be supporting the reduction of traffic lanes on Princess Bridge from two lanes to one.

Princess Bridge is a major access route to the City and the nearby Alfred Emergency Critical Care Hospital.  A reduction in vehicular access could have serious impact on Ambulance response times and could conceivable cost lives.
 
The fact that the City of Melbourne had not consulted our emergency services or reviewed their needs was a major oversight.

The City Engineers proposal to create further congestion on Princes Bridge  has been rejected by the RACV, VicRoads and other community groups.

Victoria’ Premier, Dr Napthine, on Radio 3AW Neil Mitchel earlier this week, cast doubt over the proposal following overwhelming community rejection.

Mr van der Craats said “There is no support other than from Council Engineers and the Green Bicycle Lobby group.  The State Government must rain in the City Council and put an end to the Congestion creation strategy pursued by the Greens”.

Community representatives will meet with Opposition Spokesperson Luke Donellan to seek his support in stopping this ill-considered proposal

The Engineering Services Director, Geoff Robinson, has until July 9 to address stakeholder concerns and present a workable and accepted Road Traffic proposal