Crash Analysis

Car crash Chatswood

Car crash Chatswood


The Willoughby Crash Analysis Report is based on data covering the 4-year period 2008 to 2012. The aim of the report is to use the data contained within it to develop an Action Plan for 2013-17 (We are already well into 2014 – Ed.)

The report summary identified three aspects of crashes in Willoughby:

  • there were 2 fatal crashes in 2012 c.f nil in 2010 and 2011
  • injury and tw-away crashes reduced c.f 2011
  • in 2012,15.5% of casualties were pedestrian c.f Sydney Metro’s 10.0%

The detailed report contains some interesting statistics.

  • 0nly 18% of Willoughby’s workers live in Willoughby
  • Willoughby drivers accounted for the largest number of crashes (15%) with Warringah (8%) Ryde (6%)

The population profile contains an interesting statistic. That is that the percentage of Chinese-born residents is a mere 7.0%.

Compared to Greater Sydney, Willoughby has more households with nil or 1 motor vehicles but less households with 2 or 3+ vehicles.

The number of casualties has been progressively declining since peaking around 2000. Though not stated, it is assumed that one cause of the  reductions may be as a result of targeted road safety plans over the past years.

There is not a significant difference between casualty type (driver, passenger, motorcycle, cycle, pedestrian) between Willoughby, Sydney and NSW.

Speed related crashes in Willoughby are slightly less than for Sydney and well below the State average (influenced by country roads).

Just over 25% of speed related crashes were on local streets the rest being on Regional or State roads which are under the control of the RMS.

The local streets with the worst crash history was the intersection of Herbert/Ella (11) other locations with 2 or 3 crashes where Barcoo/Barambah; Dalleys/Northcote; Deepwater/Castlecove ;Hampden/McMillan; Johnston/Victor and Warrane/McClelland.

There is a wealth of other information in the  2014 Crash Analysis Report



M1 to M2 NorthConnex



This re-announced proposal to connect the M1 (Sydney to Newcastle) to the M2 (into city via Lane Cove Tunnel) will by-pass busy Pennant Hills Rd. Whilst partly funded by Federal money, it has the potential to drain NSW of funds.

The history of long tunnels in the northern suburbs is replete with underbid contracts announced at politically convenient times: the sewer storage tunnel, the Chatswood to Parramatta rail line, the Lane Cove and M2 tunnels.  All these roughly doubled in price once construction was underway and roughly doubled again by completion.

The present stated cost is $ 2.7B for 9 kilometres of double three lane tunnels. So this could be closer to $12B by the time work is complete.

Whilst the tunnel is being built with 3 lanes each way, it appears that 2 of those lanes are ‘breakdown’ lanes and cannot be used for additional traffic (even in the future).

A further weakness of the proposal is the failure to include ramps to the Sydney side of the M2 motorway, which would require another couple of kilometres of branch tunnels, at an extra cost of the order $ 200 million.

There are unresolved issues on the location of exhaust stacks; the cost of ventilation tunnels to the stacks and particle filters (apparently omitted). Fire escape exits to the surface are to be provided at less than half kilometres spacing. The range of dangerous goods excluded from the tunnel needs expansion for long tunnels (two European long tunnels were closed for months after truck-loads of used tyres and butter caught fire).

As always, the customer pays! The occasional motorist may be willing to pay $ 6.11 toll, and has the alternative of the  surface Pennant Hills Road, with half the present volume of trucks. The Premier’s plan to force some trucks into the tunnels with a toll of $ 18.32 for trucks is problematic.

Finally, there  is no calculation of the Benefit /Cost  Ratio, which was so far below 1.0 that Infrastructure Australia refused to support Federal  funding. They have been over-ruled by politicians, and their senior staff changed. Barry O’Farrell has claimed twelve minutes time saved in each direction. In the present announcement, the number of truck trips benefiting has been “increased up” from 7,000 to10,000 truck trips per day, with a total capacity of 100,000 vehicles per day, the 10,000 trucks would pay $183,000 per day and 90,000 cars would  pay  $ 550,000 per day. Truckies could expect their small contribution to tunnel revenue to be increased if car usage is below forecast.

Assuming these revenues are achieved 365 days a year the annual revenue would be $267.5 million, which happens to be 10% of the intended construction costs.  The Lane Cove  Tunnel demonstrated that running expenditure will absorb most of the revenue, making interest free gifts of taxpayer funds necessary. The Roads Minister Mr. Gay needs to provide the correct calculations for the Benefit/Cost ratio.  By comparison, the RTA estimate of the B3 route Benefit/cost ratio was 4.1 !


President’s Column

Here is Jim McCredie’s column from the Autumn 2014 edition of the West Ward News:

By Jim McCredie

The State Coalition Government gave an election promise not to amalgamate Councils against their will. However, the NSW Planning Department is generating top-down plans. Sydney has been divided into sub-regions that will become the de facto planning commissariats. Willoughby will become a northern appendage to a City and Eastern Sub-region, a small fish in a big pond.  Our new sub-region extends south to Port Botany and Enfield Logistics Centre, and west to Macquarie Park and Rhodes. Improvements to Willoughby will be difficult for our new Mayor and the Council to achieve. Indeed, it may be that money will be sucked out of Chatswood by extension of taxes such as the State Parking Levy.

Affordable housing and seniors’ housing: Housing affordability in Sydney is the world’s fourth worst, with median house prices about nine times median wages. The Regional Plan proposed that the draft Willoughby LEP Plan allow developers added gross floor area for providing affordable housing. Unfortunately, developers have avoided including affordable units, instead offering Councils “Voluntary Planning Agreements” i.e. money to be spent on other types of community projects.

Road and public transport connections: The NSW 20 year Master Plan for Transport includes the North West Rail Link, the Westconnex motorway, and the M1 to M2 road tunnels, but nothing to relieve Pacific Highway traffic through Chatswood. (Plans for additional rail capacity between Chatswood and Sydney are urgent, but not yet publicly released).

Grow the Economy:  Chatswood was planned to be the primary office-based hub of northern Sydney providing capacity for at least 8,000 new jobs by 2031, Instead, all development sites within the core, zoned by Council for necessary new office buildings, have been given spot approval for residential non-office uses by state authorities.

The Progress Associations in Willoughby, including Chatswood West Ward, have joined forces with the Better Planning Network to oppose the new planning legislation. Residents with concerns about Planning Minister Brad Hazzard’s State planning can contact

Jim Mcredie, President

Acoustic laboritories

The following questions were posed by a local resident. Reply comments are at the end of the questions.

acousticsWe are concerned about the lack of cooperation from the company over clearing the rubbish on the site.  We were told that the council and said the Fed Govt still owned it (?).
I was thinking of getting the info from the Land Titles Office for $12 unless you can confirm either way.
Neither of us can understand the whole business and why the gate at the end of Range Street remains closed to law-abiding dog-walkers although any teenager can get in there any time.  We are a bit miffed.
I can share what I understand about the site from prior research.
1. Clearing rubbish from any site is problematic for Council (refer recent reports about a problem in the Eastern Suburbs. The issue could be further complicated if the land is still owned by the Commonwealth.
2. The proponents leased the land from the Commonwealth with an option to purchase after the property was vacated. They may not yet have exercised their option or the finalisation of a change of ownership may not have been completed. I assume that the Council information would be correct at the time they checked.
3. There is no legal instrument enshrining the public right of access to the site. The signs in Greville St advising a public right of access on weekends were installed by the Commonwealth as an act of good faith (as was leaving the front gates open on weekends). The proponent in the past has indicated that they have no  problems with public access continuing to the site. When development is completed, this will not be a ‘gated’ community. Even when the gates are locked, there is a pedestrian thoroughfare open to the left of the main gates.
The Range Street gates have never had an advisory access sign associated with them. The owner of nearby shopped negotiated that the gates be open between (I think) 10AM – 4PM weekdays to allow workers from the site to access the shop. I don’t believe there was any discussion about the public using that entrance to access the site. However, I believe that public access via the Range St gates would be consistent. The problem at the moment is that there would be limited (or no) security personnel on the site during the day. However, if the buildings are to be demolished I don’t see why they would care if the gates was open.
I believe that as part of the development that there will be a pedestrian access via Range Rd.
Please feel free to keep me informed about goings-on at the site.


Willoughby Museum


Boronia‘, the Willoughby Museum is located at 58 Johnson Street, Chatswood.’Boronia’ is a modest cottage that is representative of the Federation era. The cottage is also the headquarters of the Willoughby District Historical Society. (WDHS)

The property was bequeathed to the Society in 1988 by Sonya Kirkham, a WDHS member who was tragically killed in a car accident in 1988. It lies within the South Willoughby Conservation Area, one of 12 in Willoughby City that have been established to protect Willoughby’s heritage and make sure that new development does not detract from the streetscape, landscape and character of the city.

Heritage Week (Apr3-May25)

WilloughbyHeritageThere is a variety of activities available during Heritage Week.

3 April-21 April – Willoughby Journeys – Heritage Photo Competition

6 April – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

10 April-30 June – Frank Channon – From Willoughby to the World War I battlefront and back

13 April – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

13 April – Bushwalk – Has your heritage gone to waste?

14 April – Heritage Talk – Lancelot DeMole CBE, Inventor of the Military Tank

14 April-26 May – Keeping Place and Museum

17 April-26 May – A Hospital Journey from 1888 to 2014

20 April – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

21 April – Coming to Willoughby

27 April – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

30 April-31 May – Journeys to Artarmon

3 May – The Griffins’ Journeys – America, Australia and India

4 May – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

11 May – A Journey through Time and Space

11 May – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

18 May – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour

25 May – Gore Hill Cemetery Guided Tour