Thursday, May 29, 2014

Petition to remove bus lanes on Fitzsimons Lane and Williamsons Lane Templestowe during peek times.

I noticed this petition online and thought I'd share. It is good to see how others feel. It would also be good to hear from people who feel the roadworks have improved or degraded their experience on this section of the road.

Alter bus lanes on Fitzsimons Lane, Templestowe during peak hours to reduce traffic congestion... read more

The Liberal Party at the last election promised traffic lights would be installed at Fitzsimons Lane/Williamsons Road intersection. It could be said they've met their promise but traffic flow management lights and traffic lights are not the same. If feels to me like the entire upgrade was to cater for the 13% of people who use public transport and not for the benefit of the entire community.

I now avoid the intersection at busy times. I don't go north in the morning if I have to come back from Eltham to Templestowe as it adds 20 minutes to travel time. In normal use during off peak periods I've not noticed a significant difference. People turning left from Porter Street heading north to Eltham often don't give way to people on the roundabout and treat that section as a slip lane making it very dangerous for this who are then going into the Shell service station. The footpath on the east of Fitzsimons Lane is an improvement. There old footpath should be joined in so it is useful. It would be a waste to remove it. I see value in the pedestrian lights but haven't used them yet. There is no north/south safe crossing facility for Porter Street which could have been possible with traffic lights. The traffic heading north still appears to be banked up in the night peak as it was before the upgrade but that just an impression. I've not had enough experience on the section of road during peak time to make a good observation.

I think the mistake the government is making is only considering their own facilities such as public transport and not placing and equal emphasis on the benefit for the entire community.

Kelvin Eldridge
Call 0415 910 703 for IT support.


Transportguy said...

The issue is though, if you let cars use in peak, then buses will be delayed. And struggle keep to timetable.

Without bus lanes, there is little hope of buses running reliable, and while this example is not in Manningham, it highlights the reason why bus lanes are important.

Routes 216/219/220 which are cross city routes, from west to inner south east suffer from late running, part of which is due to traffic congestion. Unlike Manningham area, they have little bus priority and suffer massive as a result, with buses over 30 minutes!

Having buses that late, is not a way to run a transport system!

By letting car uses there lanes in question in peak, it'll just add to the delays to buses, and if everyone along these 901/902 Smartbus routes asked for the same thing in their area, well then might as forgot about bus lanes, if not there in peak when needed. And if there not there where needed, they can bed like my example of 216/219/220 with mass late running.

You should take a look at 216/219/220, to see how bad things can be if buses are given little priority.

Kelvin Eldridge said...


What you're saying however is that it is OK for 87% of the drivers to be delayed and 13% of bus users to get an advantage. If the system was designed equally for all users buses would lose a bit but drivers would gain considerably. For every bus lane there's one extra lane not available to other traffic and that could be an improvement of 50% traffic flow going from two to three lanes in many cases.

Bus timetables can be adjusted so that buses don't run late.

For me the system should be designed to treat everyone equally and not bias funding towards government only facilities. I do use public transport and a private car fairly equally.

Kelvin Eldridge said...

I should say if traffic lanes didn't exist and all users were treated equally, then both buses and cars would all gain with better planning.

Transportguy said...

In some cases timetables can be adjust
Other cases not so, this happen on 216/229/220, where some sections may take 15 minutes one day, next day 30 minutes. When got cases like that it's not as simple as changeling the timetables, as you can't get it perfect! And if you extend time too much , then the days take less time, means have buses spending lot time at time points, cUse their early.

But if you want bus lanes to just be for traffic, that's fine , but don't complain if buses are unreliable and end up like the above example of 216/219/220

Kelvin Eldridge said...

Thanks Transportguy for sharing your thoughts.

The section on Fitzsimons Lane most mornings take cars 20-30 to travel 1-2 km and that's just one small section of travel for a lot of people. The other day they blocked one lane for cars for works and so cars were left using one lane and the bus lane was left empty.

I saw Doncaster Road go from good flow to a street to avoid with huge delays for cars. When bus lanes take a lane they reduce the flow of traffic for everyone.

Buses are only one part of the transport system. The entire system needs to be considered and not just the government owned part.

I didn't complain about the buses being late before bus lanes were introduced but the impact of bus lanes on cars has been huge. The removing of indentations just blocks everyone for little gain.

Get all vehicles moving better and the entire system works better.