By Jeremy Rochow
Published: Friday, May 28, 2021
The State Budget is only a few weeks away and RAA’s launching its Six for the State campaign – key recommendations that’ll benefit all South Australians.
RAA is asking the State Government to consider the following 6 recommendations to boost the South Australian economy, improve road safety and develop infrastructure.
1. Make our South Eastern Fwy safer
Between 2015 and 2019, 237 casualty crashes occurred on the South Eastern Fwy. In a recent RAA survey, Adelaide Hills residents raised more concerns about the South Eastern Fwy than any other road in the region.
RAA wants the State Government to use income from the Crafers and Leawood Gardens speed cameras to fund safety improvements along the South Eastern Fwy.
This includes upgrading signage, extending acceleration lanes along the route, funding the stationing of a heavy vehicle recovery unit or contributing towards the construction of a third arrester bed.
RAA would also like to see speed limit signs installed on overhead gantries to clearly communicate what can be changing speed limits along one of our state’s most used transport corridors.
2. Fix our unsafe regional roads
A staggering 75% of South Australia’s road surfaces are in poor condition, according to Infrastructure SA. What’s more, there’s a $780m renewal and resurfacing backlog.
Cracked and deteriorating road surfaces can have serious safety implications, particularly on regional roads where drivers travel at high speeds. To provide safer passages for South Australians and visitors to our state, RAA wants the State Government to increase maintenance funding to repair regional roads in need of rehabilitation and resealing.
RAA has identified several regional routes that need repairing and resealing. While the State Government has committed funds to carry out maintenance on many of them, Owen Rd, the Old Sturt Hwy, Onkaparinga Valley Rd and Lobethal Rd are all yet to receive funding despite needing urgent repairs.
3. Improve Adelaide cycling infrastructure
Earlier this year, RAA released the results from our first Risky Rides survey, with almost 1000 nominations received about the riskiest on-road bike lanes and off-road cycle paths.
Anzac Hwy, Marion Rd, Greenhill Rd and Payneham Rd were the 4 most nominated roads, with many respondents raising concerns about discontinuous cycling lanes and uneven road surfaces.
When reviewing the roads, RAA found many cycling routes need repairs and resealing. Along Anzac Hwy, much of the bike lane, kerb and gutter is in poor condition. There are also gaps in cycling infrastructure along many of the other routes identified by cyclists in the Risky Rides survey.
On behalf of our members and the state’s broader cycling community, RAA wants the State Government to allocate funding to resurface and re-paint lines along major metropolitan roads, including Anzac Hwy, Marion Rd, Greenhill Rd, Payneham Rd, Cross Rd and Fullarton Rd.
4. Improve our state’s bus shelter infrastructure
Imagine this: You’re beginning your daily commute to work and waiting at a bus stop that doesn’t have a shelter. Unexpectedly it begins raining, and by the time your bus comes, you’re drenched from head to toe.
This is a reality for the many South Australians who catch public transport daily. Protection from the elements while waiting for transport is essential. This is why RAA wants a bus shelter fund established to assist councils in providing this infrastructure to ensure public transport remains a safe and accessible option for all South Australians.
5. Explore the role of technology in easing traffic congestion
In 2019, when we conducted our latest travel times survey, it was revealed that at 5.30pm, motorists on 83 sections of Adelaide roads recorded an average speed of less than 15km/h.
During the morning rush, congestion peaked at 8.30am. At this time, there was an average speed of less than 15km/h on 58 sections of road.
To reduce congestion, carbon emissions and get us all from A to B more efficiently and safely, RAA wants the State Government to investigate the implementation of intelligent transport systems technology. This uses advanced computer technology to detect different traffic situations and then develops strategies to improve traffic flow.
6. Fund a study for a Park Lands cycling and walking loop
Imagine a Dreamtime-inspired rainbow serpent circuit through the Adelaide Park Lands where you can run, walk or ride on an uninterrupted path. This could be a possibility in the future.
The Adelaide Rainbow Circuit would use 10-12km of established pathway to link the city’s unique Park Lands in a safe and sustainable way. The path will highlight Adelaide’s Kaurna and European heritage.
RAA would like to see a feasibility study for the concept, which would create an iconic tourism experience and encourage South Australians to enjoy an active lifestyle.