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Pedestrians take a walk on the wild side

City of Sydney Times

1 December 1999

By DAVID HARBOUR

Pedestrians are bumping into the new street furniture throughout the CBD and the Pedestrian Council of Australia has charged Sydney City Council with moving all signs and stands back from footpath kerbs.

Council chairman Harold Scruby wants an independent audit of all the signs, stands and kiosks installed throughout the CBD by JC Decaux for the City of Sydney.

He has told deputy Lord Mayor Lucy Turnbull that pedestrian deaths are up ten per cent on last year and with an estimated six million people visiting Sydney next year dangerously located street furniture should be moved back form the kerb and away from pedestrian crossings, especially as more than half of the visitors will be used to looking the other way.

“There are structures around the CBD which limit the vision of pedestrians and motorists and are pedestrian safety hazards,” Mr Scruby said.

“Structures around pedestrian crossings would be of primary concern.”

Councillor Turnbull has promised to have the city council’s traffic experts investigate Mr Scruby’s concerns and report their recommendations to the council’s traffic committee in the next few weeks.

“We are most concerned about the location of some of the JC Decaux advertising signs and stands throughout the city, particularly the stand on the corner of Campbell and George Streets which is located at a traffic light controlled pedestrian crossing on a nib,” Mr Scruby said.

“Nibs are designed to give better visibility to pedestrians and motorists alike, not to provide space for large, opaque constructions. The stand substantially obstructs vision at this point.”

Mr Scruby said it would be illegal to stop or park a vehicle at the location, nine metres before a pedestrian crossing.

“The stand is opaque and far bigger than the average vehicle,” he said.

He also pointed out that the advertising signs along the bus zones in York Street were too close to the kerb and obstructed the vision of motorists with one placed right in front of another pedestrian crossing.

“We request an urgent audit of these signs throughout the city so they are placed in locations which do not affect pedestrian safety,” he said.

Mr Scruby suggested that the location of street furniture should be brought to the attention of the city council’s insurers.
Related Articles:
City of Sydney Times, 24 November 1999 - Furniture lacks the vision thing
PCA Media Release 4 July 2002