Keira St alfresco dining poses problems

Wollongong Lord Mayor Gordon Bradbery has admitted the council's plan to permanently close part of Keira Street for alfresco dining has the potential to cause traffic problems.

At Monday night's council meeting, councillors threw their support behind a proposal to widen the footpath outside the GPT development and close off a portion of the western kerbside lane of Keira Street between the end of the old bus stop and the start of the left-turn bay into Market Street.

Cr Bradbery said a final decision on altering Keira Street was in the hands of Roads and Maritime Services (RMS).

"Council endorsed the proposal and, even though it's an RMS decision, they need to know where we stand," Cr Bradbery said.

However, Cr Bradbery felt that RMS might not be in favour of the proposal because of traffic flow issues created by the partial closure of a lane.

"I'm aware if you're going to widen the footpath there and take one lane out, then it's got implications for traffic elsewhere," Cr Bradbery said.

The intersection of Keira and Market streets.

The intersection of Keira and Market streets.

"I think that needs to be better managed, and a traffic plan needs to be put in place to accommodate that proposal.

"If you're going to narrow that area and restrict traffic there, you've got to look at alternative routes. I believe we've really got to work on that proposal."

Cr Bradbery suggested one such alternate route would have traffic on Flinders Street turning right at Gilligan's Island and then left at Denison Street to access west Crown Street.

Cr Bradbery said getting traffic flowing around the CBD rather than through it wasn't too difficult, claiming it was as simple as putting up "appropriate signage".

With the matter now in the hands of RMS, Cr Bradbery said a decision needed to be reached soon so it could fit in with several other projects in the CBD.

"It is something that needs to be resolved and some understanding and positions taken upon it reasonably quickly in the light of where the GPT development's going," he said.


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