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The Courier Wednesday, February 10, 2016 -- PAGE 3
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By Genevieve Cooper
A resident-driven campaign to
cut the speed limit through the
heart of Bridgewater has failed
with the transport department
ruling the current 60km/h zone is
"appropriate" for a main street that
"primarily functions as a traffic
The decision has shocked campaign
organisers Max and Laine Anderson
who started lobbying for a 50km/h
limit along a section of Mt Barker Road
in August last year after a car mounted
the footpath near the Bridgewater
Hotel and hit four children.
The crash left one teenager with a
broken foot and put a 12-year-old in
hospital for five days.
"I find it an odd decision but they (the
Department of Planning, Transport
and Infrastructure, DPTI) looked at it
from a technical point of view and they
might have taken into account a survey
on the issue which the council believed
was inconclusive," Ms Anderson said.
"I can see that not everyone might be
in favor of it but the vast majority of
people I have spoken to would like to
make it like the vast majority of other
towns in the State.
"... A 50km/h speed limit sends such
a strong signal in general, that you re
coming into a town, please take care."
Ms Anderson, a local resident and
newspaper columnist, said a 50km/h
speed limit might not have prevented
last year s footpath crash but the
experience "rattled" the residents who
were first on the scene, pushing them
to do something about reducing the
speed limit after talking about it for
They organised a petition calling for
a 50km/h limit past the shops, hotel,
football oval and playground.
It collected 800 signatures, about half
online. Ms Anderson was concerned
that the petition might not have
carried sufficient weight with the
Adelaide Hills Council because the
online signatures didn t show any
addresses to prove they were locals.
When DPTI asked the council for its
opinion about cutting the speed limit
late last year, elected members told the
department to do a technical review
and make a decision based on traffic
and road design factors.
They had heard that the council had
received correspondence registering
opposition to changing the speed limit
and that, back in 2007, a previous
council had done "broad community
consultation" about introducing a
50km/h speed limit and the result was
Adelaide Hills Mayor Bill Spragg said
the DPTI decision was a disappointing
result for the residents who wanted
the speed limited reduced.
He said he personally felt the section
of Mt Barker Road near the oval and
playground probably warranted the
lower speed limit to make it safer for
pedestrians and easier for motorists
turning right from Carey Gully Road
during peak times.
"I think, given the way (DPTI) chop
and change the speed limits through
other parts of the Hills, there was an
argument for changing this section,
particularly where the playground and
oval are," he said.
A DPTI spokesman said the
department "proactively" sought the
views of the council about the speed
limit and was told to do a technical
He said that assessment found that
60km/h was appropriate because the
road functioned as a "key arterial
traffic route, and high frequency
public transport corridor carrying a
significant volume of commercial and
Namely, most of the pedestrian
movements and car parking and
manoeuvring associated with the shops,
hotel, football oval and playground
happened in areas off Mt Barker Road
rather than closely intersecting with
Mt Barker Road.
Ms Anderson said the department
should have done its technical survey
on weekends when more people crossed
the road, compared to during working
She said the campaign organisers
would now write to their local
politicians and the Transport and
Road Safety Ministers to see if they
could make representations to the
department on their behalf.
"Someone needs to make a change,"
"Right now I don t feel like we can."
The State Government has rejected a community push to reduce the speed limit through Bridgewater to 50km/h.
I think ... there was an
argument for changing this
section, particularly where
the playground and oval are
-- Adelaide Hills Mayor Bill Spragg
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