Proposal status: Feedback closed 5 March 2020, last updated 30 April 2020.
Reference number: RSU1920-107
In February 2020, we proposed changes in your area
To improve safety for people walking and cycling, we proposed new raised tables and pedestrian safety improvements on Kalmia Street in Ellerslie. These changes are needed to reduce vehicle speeds where demand to cross the road is highest.
These improvements are part of a region-wide programme to improve the safety of existing pedestrian crossings at key locations such as schools.
The proposed changes will proceed to the next stage of detailed planning before being constructed.
Thank you to everyone who responded to our proposal and gave us the chance to better understand your community and concerns. A summary of your feedback and our responses to community questions is below.
- Multiple respondents were pleased there will be a safe place for pedestrians to cross and that traffic will be slowed down.
- Multiple concerns that the proposal will make congestion issues worse especially during peak hours.
Kalmia Street is a local road that also provides access to a school. The street attracts a lot of through traffic, with drivers cutting between Main Highway and Great South Road, but this should not be the function of this road. The raised tables will slow traffic down, making it safer for the school children that are walking in this area. This could create some additional congestion along this road, but given the function of the road and surrounding land use, traffic flow is not the priority.
- Multiple requests to incorporate a pedestrian crossing on the raised table on the corner or install speed bumps or traffic lights instead.
There is a signalised crossing provided 70 metres from the corner, which is primarily in place to ensure safe access to the school. The signalised crossing has a school patrol present before and after school. It would not be ideal to place another controlled crossing in such close proximity, and this may also discourage school children from using the patrolled, signalised crossing. The raised table at the corner will slow traffic down and make it much safer for people to cross here, if they choose not to use the signalised crossing that is visible and only a very short walk from the corner.
- Multiple concerns people won't utilise the crossing on the raised table.
We undertook site visits during peak times. During these site visits we observed most school children crossing Kalmia Street did so at the signalised crossing. A school patrol operates at the signalised crossing both before and after school.
- Concerns the raised table on the corner will encourage the Ellerslie School students to cross on a corner rather than at the signalised crossing.
We understand the concerns raised and will continue to work with the school and the school community to ensure that children know where the best place to cross is and the importance of using the existing mid-block signalised crossing outside the school.
- Request for a school speed zone during school arrival and leaving hours instead of the speed table outside 6 Kalmia Street.
The proposed raised tables will reduce vehicle speeds and improve pedestrian safety at all times of day. A school speed zone only reduces speed at certain times and is reliant on driver compliance. The raised tables will be more effective in improving safety.
- Suggestion that the motorway overbridge is extended from the train station to go over Kalmia Street or a pedestrian underpass is built.
Extending the motorway pedestrian bridge or building an underpass would have a significant cost. On local roads, it is better to have crossings. If the traffic volumes are low enough for people to cross the street, they will just cross and ignore the overbridge or underpass which will likely have a less convenient route.
- Request to install fencing barriers so people can't walk out on the street and are forced to cross at the correct, designated place.
On a local street, which should be an area accessible for all modes of travel, it is not desirable to implement barriers for pedestrians. This type of treatment would only be suitable in a busy, car focused area.
- Concern relocating the bus stop will make integration between bus and rail less attractive.
In principle we agree that it is not ideal to move the bus stop away from the train station. However, in this instance, the bus stop is only moving approximately 50 metres and needs to be moved to allow for the proposed raised table.
- Suggestion to move the bus stop as there are cars coming out of buildings and underground carparks.
It is desirable to have the bus stops as close as possible to the train station. Moving the bus stops further from driveways would push the bus stops even further from the train station which is undesirable.
- Suggestion to relocate bus stops 295, 298, and 321 from Kalmia Street to in front of Post Office on Main Highway.
The 295, 298 and 321 bus routes stop on Kalmia Street to connect with the Ellerslie Train Station, and the Ellerslie town centre via the footbridge over the motorway. Rerouting these routes across the motorway into the Ellerslie town centre would likely reduce the efficiency of these routes. The Central Auckland bus network was reviewed and improved in 2018.
- Suggestion to move the bus stops entirely, away from the corner, and encourage train users to catch bus from Ellerslie shops.
The bus stops in the Ellerslie town centre and the bus stops on Kalmia Street serve different bus routes. Removing the bus stops on Kalmia Street would remove access to bus routes that serving the western side of the Central Isthmus.
- Concern about the removal of parking spaces and relocation of parking spaces onto the raised table.
The primary purpose of the raised table is to slow down traffic and improve safety for people crossing Kalmia Street in this location. Parking is proposed to be permitted on the raised table in the locations shown, as it will not affect visibility for people crossing the road, and it will not reduce the effectiveness of the raised table in slowing down traffic. Providing parking here also mitigates the effects on overall parking provision on Kalmia Street. When considering all the proposed works, there will be no loss in the number of parking spaces on Kalmia Street.
- Query if there is any evidence that cars are driving too quickly on this street.
Speed surveys were undertaken which indicated that 25% of drivers were exceeding 50 km/h near the school. The ideal speed for a safer road environment for all road users is 30 km/h.
- Request to put a raised table on the existing crossing near to the school.
This was considered in the design process. As a bus route, it is not desirable to have a high number of raised tables or speed bumps. This affects bus passenger comfort and safety. The primary objective of this project is address pedestrian safety near the corner.
- Requests to signalise the intersection of Kalmia Street and Main Highway.
The primary objective of this project is to improve safety for people crossing Kalmia Street at the midblock, particularly at the corner. Signalising the Main Highway/Kalmia Street intersection is not within the scope of this project.
- Request for a crossing at far end of the bridge on main highway.
This was considered in the design process, however the primary objective of this project is reducing vehicle speeds and improving safety for pedestrians crossing Kalmia Street midblock particularly at the corner.
- Request to increase the length of the concrete strip, concrete the grass strip and install a clear sided bus shelter with seats at the bus stop facing Main Highway.
The scope of this project is to improve the safety of Kalmia street for pedestrians. Improvements to the bus stop are not within the scope, but this feedback will be passed on to the AT Metro team.
- Suggestion for a bus boarding strip instead of the proposed kerb cut back.
The kerb cut back is proposed as buses are driving over the kerb when leaving the bus stop immediately to the south, which is creating a notable maintenance issue. Improvements to the bus stop are not within the scope of this project, but this feedback will be passed on to the AT Metro team.
- Request for rubbish bins at bus stops.
The primary scope of this project is to improve the safety of Kalmia street for pedestrians. Improvements to the bus stop are not within the scope, but this feedback can be passed on to the AT Metro team.
- Request for somewhere to lock up bikes.
Additional bike parking is desirable for the train station, but not within the scope of this project.
- Suggestion for a change in colour and white lettering on road warning of pedestrians at the T junction with Sultan Street and request for raised table crossing the top of Sultan Street.
The primary scope of this project is reducing vehicle speeds and improving safety for pedestrians crossing Kalmia Street mid-block particularly at the corner. Improvements to the Sultan Street intersection are not within the scope or budget for this project.
These works are planned for November 2020, but we will let you know if there are further changes or delays. Our contractors will send notices to affected residents 48-hours prior to construction starting.