Is one way traffic and angled parking the future of the Nowra CBD?
It may sound radical but it is one suggestion being put forward by Nowra man Bill Hancock.
He believes it would allow more parking in the CBD, something many business owners have been screaming for, and would make for easier traffic flow.
Anyone who witnessed the Easter long weekend traffic carnage in the CBD where, the town virtually became gridlocked as motorists tried to escape the Princes Highway “parking lot” by using back streets, would agree something has to be done.
Mr Hancock, who along with his wife own a property in Kinghorne Street, has proposed a possible solution to the traffic woes.
He has suggested creating a circuitous one-way route around the CBD, taking in Moss Street off the Princes Highway, west along North Street to Berry Street, south to Worrigee Street and then continue east back to the Princes Highway.
He also proposes Worrigee Street from Haigh Avenue to the intersection of the highway be four lanes of traffic heading east, with two being able to turn north and two south.
“One way traffic at the Moss Street and Worrigee Street intersections should also result in shorter stoppages for highway traffic,” he said.
In Moss, North, Berry and Worrigee streets he has proposed angle parking to provide more spaces.
Mr Hancock estimates angle parking in North, Berry and Worrigee Streets alone could increase the number of available car parks spaces by 280.
“That’s equivalent to another Stewart Place car park,” he said.
“The old Nowra CBD is not working. It’s suffering from years of mismanagement and as a result has fallen out of favour.
“We need creative people to come up with some creative ideas and let's see if we can turn things around.”
Mr Hancock believes these suggestions would allow higher traffic flows and should remove the need for traffic lights in the CBD.
“It would also allow more opportunity for better landscaping and redesign of parking spaces,” he said.
“Extra parking is one of the major objectives. Where possible bus stops and driveways should be relocated or eliminated from these streets.”
He estimates the total available kerb space of around 1915 metres.
“Parallel parking needs 13 metres for two cars,” he said “angle parking needs 26m for six cars and on those numbers we would get an extra 280 car parking places.
“And the extra parking is being evenly distributed around the CBD and should stimulate business and property values along those streets.
“Ann Sudmalis [Gilmore MP] has got black spot funding for the Kinghorne and Moss street intersection to put traffic lights there - we don't need that, it will just make more traffic congestion.
“If you apply a cost of $10,000 to create each parking space the total cost would be around $2.8 million.”
Mr Hancock also proposes the pedestrian crossing in O’Keefe Avenue, behind Nowra Mall, be converted to a pedestrian refuge where vehicles have the right of way.
He suggested Osborne Street could become the main western bypass for the CBD in preference to the current situation of using Berry Street.
He has offered a few other suggestions to help with local traffic flow.
To allow better and easier access to Stockland Nowra, Brereton Street near Nowra High School be extended south into the shopping centre and Journal Street also be opened to vehicle access into the rear of Stockland.
Further south, he suggests a slip lane at St Anns Street for southbound highway traffic which intends to travel east. Opening up Seccombe Street to Kalandar Street would allow motorists to bypass the Kalandar Street traffic lights and the East Nowra shopping centre and traffic light congestion.