On the issue of safety, under the present system of …

Comment on Back to the drawing board on pedestrian crossings in Alice CBD by Hal Duell.

On the issue of safety, under the present system of using a centre island pedestrians have to look in one direction, spot a gap in the coming traffic, walk half-way across the street, look the other way, spot another gap and complete the crossing.
It works. With apologies to Cr Martin’s mum, it works. Traffic flows and pedestrians manage to safely cross either of two busy streets in our CBD countless times every single day.
A wombat crossing will stop traffic. When next in town, have a look at the pedestrians waiting on either side of Hartley and Bath Street, or on the island in their middles. And then consider what will be the result if they know they can walk out with impunity and traffic from both directions will have to stop to accommodate them.
The traffic on both streets, each linked to roundabouts at either end, will periodically be forced to stop, and sometimes for extended times. The potential for a traffic jam with the accompanying anger is simply too great a risk for Council to proceed with a wombat crossing. They will be putting pedestrians in danger, and they will be angering motorists.
Or if they do proceed, they should be prepared to handle the blow-back.
I agree that speed bumps are not a good idea, and I think the push-button on any lights will be abused. The current system works. Why try to fix it?

Hal Duell Also Commented

Back to the drawing board on pedestrian crossings in Alice CBD
Since I’m opposed to it, it’s good to read that the idea of a wombat crossing is not being supported. If there are others out there of a similar mind, may I suggest you contact one or more counsellors and express your views?
Since being elected six months age, this new council has shown itself willing to listen. They are, or at least they seem to be, approachable. So if enough of us let them know how we feel about this, we could help bring about a better-than-a-wombat outcome.
Of course there is the matter of them not answering the questions that they take on notice, but hopefully that, too, will soon change. Or at least so Mayor Ryan assured me at Monday’s meeting.


Recent Comments by Hal Duell

Fracking OK, but under ‘strict laws’ – Gunner
From the moment Gunner failed to give an unequivocal NO to fracking during the last election, we all knew this was going to happen. It was just a matter of time.


‘Anzac Oval not for sale’: govt under pressure on gallery plans
I write this as an appeal to Chief Minister Gunner to reconsider his choice of the Anzac area as the location for the proposed National Aboriginal Art Gallery.
Not only did your own steering committee nominate the Desert Park as the optimal choice, but ever since your overriding of their recommendation, the wheels have been coming off what was once a project that had everyone on board.
Many in Alice recognize the heritage value of the old Anzac High School and the Anzac Oval, and while neither carries official heritage listing, I understand efforts are being made to rectify that.
Yes, it would be possible to relocate the rugby fields of Anzac Oval, but at what addition to the cost of building the proposed gallery?
I suggest the final nail in the coffin of public indifference regarding this issue was the published plans to do away with a car park that many who work in the CBD use every day.
The score so far seems to be the destruction of a still valuable building of heritage value and of an oval of similar value, the cost of a new rugby stadium and the cost of a new car park. And all that before construction on a new gallery can begin.
I ask you to please reconsider the Desert Park, as that choice would mean no valuable building to take down, and neither a new car park nor a new stadium needed. I suggest this would be a better choice both economically and politically. Not only would the project cost less, but it would not alienate any of your supporters in Alice Springs.
I will close with a cautionary note to the Gunner ALP government in Darwin: When you next come to town to consult, please don’t repeat your mistake of thinking Central Australia is fly over country.


Youth crisis: broken window of tolerance
As noted by all the comments so far, this is an excellent article, well reasoned and well presented.
But to engage with the marginalised youth in Alice in a positive manner, a venue is needed. Such a venue is at hand. The old Anzac High School would fill that bill admirably.
I hope our Town Council reads this article and carefully considers whether a MOU with Darwin concerning the proposed art gallery, which would destroy that high school building in a quest for more tourist dollars and a dubious attempt to reinvigorate the CBD, is really more important than attempting to address the very real youth social issues plaguing Alice Springs.


Private chats with govt heavy: mixed results
Jimmy, any chance you could expand on that comment for us?


Can Jacinta Price sit in Town Council and Federal Parliament?
@ Erwin: True, but here’s the thing. I have never expected Cr Price to serve out this four year term of Council. Surprise me by all means, but surprise me you will.
Am I bothered by this? If she resigns to take Yamba to Las Vegas, that would be one thing. But if she resigns to take her message of family responsibility to Canberra, that would be another.


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