Petition for Road Safety
The corner where Weedons Ross Road meets State Highway 73 will be familiar to us all. Perhaps you regularly find yourself at the wheel on Weedons Ross Rd, trying to make a right turn, having to wait many minutes for the opportunity as you give way to streams of traffic. Or perhaps you’ve crossed on foot near the corner lately, and thought to yourself, “This is really dangerous. I would never let my child cross here”.
This time last year, NZTA was planning to upgrade the SH73 road corridor between Aylesbury and Yaldhurst. A recommended component of this upgrade was a set of lights for this intersection. In October 2018 budget adjustments and a switch in roading priorities meant our intersection would lay in-wait until at least 2022.
With 14 accidents in the 10 year period of 2009-2018, NZTA categorises this as a medium-risk intersection. The unfortunate truth is that with no fatal accidents it does not measure up to other dangerous intersections in New Zealand. We think circumstances are changing to warrant further consideration.
We don’t want to wait.
Our town has grown up, but this intersection has not. The housing developments in West Melton have added thousands of new residents, and in surrounding districts, thousands more are traveling through our town each day, yet the intersection is the same intersection that served the handful of residents who lived here in the 90s and earlier. What’s of major concern is a new route to the West Coast from Christchurch via the new southern motorway through Weedons Ross Rd and our troublesome intersection. We think it’s likely that Google Maps and Waze will select this as the fastest route. We believe this is an oversight of the CSM2 project.
So we’re left with our village on the Canterbury Plains cut in half by streams of traffic, with sporting facilities on one side and the bulk of the population on the other side. As Wilfield fills up, children are being driven to school on the north side of town, and more commuters are forced each day to make dangerous choices to pull-out into narrow gaps. Last week we heard from NZTA regarding a fast-tracked initiative to lower the SH73 speed zone through West Melton to 60km/h. We wholly support this. Yet we still firmly believe this intersection needs to be upgraded to a light-controlled type, with pedestrian crossing signals.
And so we’re taking action and the association is asking for your help to keep the spotlight on this intersection. Amy Adams has offered to present a petition calling for safety improvements at this intersection in Parliament. Now we need as many affected people as possible to sign it.
You can do this online at the link below, or on paper at a local business. You must have an independent email address to sign online and you cannot sign both online and on paper. Anyone can sign, even children.
Sign the petition to improve road safety in West Melton, because we don’t want to wait until someone is seriously injured or killed.