Public debate puts Palmerin St shared zone trial in jeopardy

THE 12-month trial of the extended shared zone along Palmerin St could be cut short when the matter is brought before the Southern Downs Regional Council next month.

Cr Jamie Mackenzie told the council during yesterday's general committee meeting that he had been inundated with calls and emails regarding the trial.

"We would have our ears talked off if we waited 12 months," Mayor Peter Blundell said.

On Monday the mayor, chief executive Andrew Roach and Deputy Mayor Ross Bartley met with representatives from the school and school P and C to discuss the issues of the shared zone.

Cr Bartley said several points were discussed.

"The school inquired about making the whole block a school zone," he said.

"The CEO said we need to put the proper infrastructure in place for the trial to be done properly."

Director of engineering services Peter See said a school zone along Palmerin St was not an option.

"The area does not meet the requirements for a school zone," he said.

"I have looked at this issue three times over the past nine years."

Cr Bartley said the Warwick police would also be invited to provide comment on the issue.

The trial shared zone was put in place earlier this month.

Any motorists in the shared zone are required to travel at 25kmh and to give way to all pedestrians crossing the road.

The issue of the shared zone has generated a lot of debate online since it was introduced.

'Warwickite' from Warwick said the whole trial was a joke.

"The situation in front of the school is more volatile than it ever has been before," she said.

"I also think what a joke the availability of the flashing signs is, when the safety of the students at Warwick's biggest educational facility is only worth 2 weeks of flashing signs."

T. Clarkson from Glennie Heights said the initiative was promoting bad practice.

"I believe the whole shared zone thing for 'safety' is rubbish. How is it safe for a student to think they can just walk out in front of a car?" he said.

He said if they got used to doing that, they would face problems when in a big city.

"How about a couple of zebra crossings?" he asked.

A report will be prepared by the engineering committee and presented to the council during November's engineering committee meetings.

Topics:  community, motorists, palmerin street, police, school zone, southern downs regional council, traffic



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