Shared zone a tricky solution
IT IS no wonder motorists, parents and students were confused by the new shared zone outside Warwick State High School with the majority unaware the road outside the school had even been rezoned, let alone what a shared zone actually means.
The Daily News watched the chaos unfold outside the high school at pick-up time yesterday with cars zooming around the Victoria St roundabout, backing out of carparks and students waiting to cross the road.
For the next 12 months motorists are expected to travel at 25kmh along the whole stretch of Palmerin St and have to give way to any pedestrian crossing the road.
While the Daily News monitored the situation not one car stopped for any of the children waiting to cross.
The decision of a shared zone was reached as a compromise between the council, nearby businesses and Warwick State High School.
WSHS proposed a zebra crossing or designated crossing area outside the school to make it safer for students to cross the road.
A zebra crossing would take away up to 13 car parks from the surrounding business and the total project is estimated to cost $2500.
Year 10 student Kristy Boyce knew the rules of a shared zone but was unaware this area of the street had been rezoned as one as of Monday.
"Cars have not been stopping for people though," she said.
"If they did it would stop all the traffic."
Another Year 10 student, Jaime Bourke, said she crossed over Palmerin St to the Harvey Norman side every day.
"The cars haven't stopped for me yet," she said.
Aisling Pryor is in Year 9 and also crosses the road on a daily basis.
"I didn't know this was a shared zone either," she said.
"I think it is a good idea but the cars don't stop."
Vanessa Duggan from Year 9 said a pedestrian crossing would have been better.
"People know what that is," she said.
A concerned grandmother, who did not wish to be named, said she was unaware of the change.
"People don't see signs; there is too much happening," she said.
"It won't work while cars can still do u-turns, it is too dangerous."
A mother said there had not been any notice about the changes in the school newsletter.
"Why not a zebra crossing?" she asked.
Councillors Glyn Rees, Jo McNally, Jamie Mackenzie and Cameron Gow were against the trial.