Thirroul: Observation 1

Walking to the train stations – the most ordinary walk we make –  can be painfully outdated and unsafe. Not that I expect too much, but as private motor vehicles receive the bulk of the right-of-way in most places most of the time; can I not, at least, cross safely in a few key places?   

Here, for example, is my last intersection to cross to get to the train station close to where I live:

Here is how it is unsafe:

  • Drivers do not slow down, and instead often try to take the curve at full speed, without changing gears. 
  • No car leaving the parking lot stops at the white stop line. Though they may yield to an oncoming car, the drivers never yield to a pedestrian. Doing so may cause an accident, I guess?
  • There are no zebra crossings, either because no-one has thought of it or if they did it was: “Do you think were gonna paint everything?”  The answer to which is no, but at high-use crossings between a train station and a park is among the better places to start. Drivers can be encouraged through signage (if not horizontal deflection) to pay attention and slow down in such places.
  • The footpath ramp in the parking lot (mid-left) is a nice touch, but again, pedestrians yield to cars.

This is tolerated by the local council, Sydney trains, and/or Transport for NSW. I imagine there are thousands of such non-existent pedestrian crossings across the country.

This may be a small example in a small town on the fringe of Sydney, but what an easy places to start making improvements.

I feel the same sensation of un-safety almost everywhere I travel by train in NSW. (I have heard of improvements to the surrounds of stations on the new Metro.)

The image above is a suggestion for a very basic level of treatment using horizontal traffic calming – street narrowing – and regulation signage.

Thank you,