There is a DA application that the Department of Planning has put forward as part of ‘Major Projects’ that closes this Monday to turn the two large advertising signs under the Boundary St Railway Bridge digital.
It looks like only RMS has made a submission yet and that neither Willoughby or Ku-ring-gai Council have made one yet (I have emailed our West Ward and Middle Harbour Councillors this afternoon).
The RMS submission, which opposes the sign on one side, also looks like it was made by someone who was at their desk and doesn’t know intimately how that whole section of road operates at present like we locals do, and consider all the safety issues with this intersection and how dangerous it would be to create an additional distraction right at this already complicated traffic location.
I know there is lots happening but it would be good if our Progress Associations or individual members could put in submissions, even if just a quick sentence re the related safety issues to ensure that there is proper representation on the issue. I am concerned to ensure that because it is on the boundary of two council areas and the boundary of two progress associations and made at a time when people are focussed on the amalgamations that it does not get missed by all. If you consider that there are safety issues can you please put in a submission on behalf of the Progress Associations and/or as individuals by the closing date on Monday.
It is quick and easy to make an electronic submission at the following link (the Railbridge DA is second down on the list) or go to Dept of Planning website and ‘major projects’ and put in ‘Willoughy’:
To give you a summary of some of the issues, here is a copy of my submission:
Digital signs can be very distracting and it is very dangerous to have digital signs distracting drivers within a major intersection. These applications to replace the existing signage with digital signage should be refused because they pose a serious road safety issue for the following reasons:
- The section of Boundary Street from the Pacific Highway to Archer Street is very busy and currently operates like one big intersection for much of the day, and should be treated as such for consideration of this DA application.
- This is already quite a dangerous section of road because:
- there is already much confusion and distraction with traffic entering this section from Hill Street and Archer Street, and because of the volume of traffic quite a few cars fly out of Hill street unexpectedly and in traffic gaps that are too narrow to accommodate them;
- there are cars changing lanes right where the digital signage is proposed in both directions as the numbers of lanes increase in both directions within metres of the proposed digital signage;
- this is the major thoroughfare from the Northern Beaches through to the Ryde area and Western Sydney, and many drivers who come through are new to the area and don’t know which way to go and need to make last minute decisions which lane they need to be in.
- In this section of Boundary Street the drivers changing lanes, those turning into Boundary St and those already in Boundary St need to be fully focussed on the road, other drivers, and what else is happening ahead of them in this large 3 in 1 intersection (which combines 3 intersections which are each busy intersections in their own right); and
- The existing non-digital signage which has been put in place since the Bridge was replaced is already a enough of a distraction.
- There are also cars coming in and out of the petrol station driveway and in the driveway to the units on the South and the North Side of Boundary St between the highway and the Bridge, and drivers don’t usually expect cars to be turning in and out of these driveways.
For these safety reasons the application to convert both signs to digital signage should be refused.
In considering road safety data for this application, Boundary St is the boundary between two Council areas, so you need to acquire the data for both Kuringgai and Willoughby because some accidents are recorded by police as being in one Council area and some in the other, and without both sets of data any figures you use will be materially understated. (This was the case when accident rates at the Boundary St/Spearman St intersection were being considered, and it was not showing up as being a dangerous intersection because data was being attributed to two different council areas. When data was considered together it was realised there were issues)”