About-turn for Stirling

STIRLING deputy mayor David Lagan says his council will listen to Mt Lawley residents if they really hate proposed modifications to a dangerous intersection.

On Saturday Cr Lagan joined mayor Mark Irwin and six of his colleagues at a public meeting organised by residents to protest against the council’s plan to allow only left-hand turns from Second Avenue into Carrington Street (“Taking a turn for the worse,” Voice, March 2, 2019).

Speaking after the occasionally heated meeting of about 80 residents, Cr Lagan said there had been two recent examples in Menora where councillors had stepped in to help residents who were unhappy with traffic calming proposals.

• Stirling mayor Mark Irwin addresses about 80 residents who are angry with the council’s plans to allow only left-hand turns at a dangerous intersection in Mt Lawley, saying the ‘solution’ will only push the traffic problems onto their streets. Photos by Ian Merker

“If the community say ‘we don’t want this’, we will drop it,” Cr Lagan said.

“There are multiple ways that the issue could be addressed, and I’m sure that we will come up with the best option that suits the community.”

Cr Lagan said anger at Saturday’s meeting had been stoked by an anonymous flyer distributed to residents a few days before, which claimed the council’s decision to ban right turns was set in concrete.

• Tempers flared, which one councillor said was fuelled by “misinformation” in an anonymous pamphlet.

“My take on it was that they came down and have been spoon-fed misinformation,” he said of the crowd.

Cr Lagan said the meeting helped to calm the tension, but acknowledges some people were still expressing distrust in the council.

Following the Voice’s initial report (“Taking a turn for the worse,” Voice, March 1, 2019), councillor Elizabeth Re raised a notice of motion at the council’s last meeting calling on the city’s traffic engineers to slow down and do some more consultation.

Residents in the surrounding streets subsequently received a letter from the council asking for their views, with submissions due to close yesterday (Friday, March 23).

Meeting organiser Jan Wilkie says opposition to the current plan is growing quickly, with a couple of hundred people already putting their signature to a petition calling on the council to have a rethink.

The surgeon that heads Royal Perth Hospital’s trauma unit, Dr Sudhakar Rao, is also a First Avenue resident and added his voice to concerns the council’s plans could actually increase the number of traffic accidents in the area.

by STEVE GRANT

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