Lane Cove Council was asked to investigate methods to reduce the congestion around the Longueville Road Pedestrian Crossing. A report has been prepared and the recommendation is to undertake further surveys of the traffic flow.
The report focuses solely on whether or not signals should be put in place at the pedestrian crossing. No other options were investigated and the report failed to look at other factors that impact Longueville Road traffic (for example Central Avenue being the only access point for the Lane Cove Aquatic Centre).
Lane Cove Council undertook queue length surveys to evaluate the impact of pedestrian traffic on vehicular traffic at the Lane Cove Plaza crossing on Longueville Road. To ensure that the worst case scenario was captured, the surveys were undertaken when pedestrian and vehicular traffic was expected to be at a maximum.
The surveys were undertaken on the following days:
- Wednesday, 4 July 2018 between 8.00 – 9.00am, 2.30-3.30pm and 5.00-6.00pm; and
- Saturday, 30 June 2018 between 9.00 -10.00am and 12.00-2.00pm.
It was a shame that the Wednesday survey was taken on 4th July (this coincided with the three week July holiday period for private schools).
The initial surveys undertaken measured only the queue lengths but not the vehicular delays. The Lane Cove Council has requested additional surveys to measure the vehicular delays over a 12 hour period which will provide more accurate results. The additional surveys will also investigate whether the pedestrian activity at the Plaza causes vehicular delays in Austin Street and Market Square car park.
After reviewing the data the report noted the average queue lengths depict the impact of pedestrian traffic on vehicular traffic is generally minimal. The morning surveys (on Wednesday and Saturday) revealed that on average, the maximum queue length varied from three (3) to four (4) vehicles for both the northern and southern approaches. The PM surveys show that the average maximum queue length varied from one (1) to five (5) vehicles for both approaches.
The table below summarises the maximum queue lengths and the time it takes for the queue lengths to reduce to an acceptable level for each approach at various survey times. In a heavily pedestrianised area such as the Plaza, a queue of three (3) vehicles is generally considered acceptable.
As seen in the table below, typically, the maximum queue lengths dissipate to an acceptable level within 1 to 2.5 minutes. However, there are two (2) occurrences where this was not the case:
- The survey undertaken on Wednesday, 4 July 2018 indicated that there was a maximum queue length of 18 vehicles at 2.47pm which corresponds with school pick up time. The queue length approximately extended up to Austin Street and took approximately five (5) minutes to reduce to two (2) vehicles.
- On Saturday, 30 June 2018, the highest queue lengths were observed between 1.41pm and 1.47pm with the maximum queue being 13 vehicles at 1.41pm
|Wednesday, 4 July 2018|
|North Leg||South Leg|
|Time at which max queue length occurred||Max queue Length (veh)||Time for max queue to reduce to 3 vehicles or less (mins)||Time at which max queue length occurred||Max queue Length (veh)||Time for max queue to reduce to 3 vehicles or less (mins)|
|8:00 am||10||2.11||8.04 am||7||1.44|
|3.24 pm||7||1.27||2.47 pm||18||5.05|
|5.54 pm||9||1.01||5.37 pm||12||2.28|
|Saturday, 30 June 2018|
|9.00 am||13||1.27||9.02 am||8||1.42|
|12.03 pm||14||1.16||1.41 pm||13||8.42|
Lane Cove Council has discussed the installation of traffic signals at this crossing with Roads and Maritime Services (RMS). The RMS are concerned that if this location was signalised people would weave in and out of the cars instead of waiting for the lights to change. A practice that already occurs along Longueville Road.
The RMS also said lights would have a flow on effect at Austin Street given the close proximity to the two traffic signals. This totally ignores the fact that there is already an impact on Austin Street. The other issue not taken into account was people turning right into Central Avenue. This delays traffic and then approx. 100m later pedestrians meander across the pedestrian crossing in dribs and drabs further delaying traffic. The Lane Cove Council needs to look at the entire section of road not just the pedestrian crossing. There is no doubt that traffic has become worse since Central Avenue became the main access road to the Lane Cove Aquatic Centre.
Are traffic signals the only option to improve traffic flow? ITC hopes the Lane Cove Council will take a holistic view of the Longueville Road traffic flow. We will let you know when the further surveys are undertaken. It seems strange that traffic time delays were not recorded in the first place.
Do you have a local issue you would like help with? ITC is here to help just email us at [email protected]
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