Monday, 22 July 2013

Connecting the dots

Transport for NSW has released two documents about the Light Rail Project. One was the brochure released when the Project was announced in December, which contained gibberish, jargon about Stakeholders and Round Tables and infantile modelling. The second document was released on the 9th of April 2013 and is called Industry Briefing Session and can be downloaded from their website. This document is much more informative.

We can deduce the design of the tramway in Anzac Parade from this document and can assess the impact of the tramway on traffic movements in Anzac Parade and in the whole of the South Eastern Suburbs. The diagram above indicates the design of the tram stop between the University of New South Wales and NIDA. Things to note are:

  • All traffic including buses are funnelled into one lane each way as in George Street.
  • There are head-high pedestrian barriers right left and centre to shepherd passengers into the cattle-cars.
With making deductions you run the risk that the designs can be changed in the face of criticism and wide-spread Public anguish. Don't laugh, this has already happened. The brochure released in December showed a dot between Riley Street and Crown Street, and the dot was subsequently given the name of Devonshire Street, Ward Park. Now our Wiki-leakers refer to this dot as Surry Hills. It is impossible to deduce where this dot will end up.

However there is very little wriggle room between the University of NSW and NIDA as you can confirm with Google Maps. The sheer glass foyers of NIDA are built on the street boundaries and University buildings are on the boundaries.
Anzac Parade currently operates with two vehicle traffic lanes in each direction with potentially one tidal-flow bus priority lane in each direction. The bus priority lanes are used for short term parking for local businesses in off peak periods. The tramway forces the two lanes of vehicular traffic into the bus lanes, twenty-four hours a day, forever. If a traffic artery is reduced to one lane at any point it is reduced to one lane for all of that length.

We will assess the impacts of running a tramway along a vital traffic artery with all the data that is currently available. The Road and Traffic Authority has more up to date data and can run Apps with this data, but O'Farrell will not allow the RTA to do modelling of traffic flows around tram stops.

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