Speed changes a no brainer

Mike Pettit, pictured in the afterschool rush with Cambridge Primary School road patroller Lachlan Copeland, said the proposed reduction from 50 to 40km/h outside his school made “absolute sense”.

Cambridge Community Board Chairman Mike Pettit has welcomed a proposal by council to introduce sweeping speed changes across the district.

Also the principal of Cambridge Primary School, he believed the idea was a logical one, and certainly beneficial for Cambridge.

“It makes absolute sense to reduce the speed limit to 40km/h as mandatory around schools,” he said.

“The additional reaction time it creates for both the driver and pedestrian or cyclist will save injury or worse for our children.”

With the school located right behind the town centre – which averages 16,000 vehicles a day – it makes a huge difference for the students crossing a busy Duke St intersection.

After one week of opening the proposal to the public, over 250 people had responded to council with their thoughts on the 200-plus speed changes around the district. 695 visitors spent an average of 11 minutes checking out all the details on the “Have Your Say” website.

Liz Stolwyk described the biggest of the proposed changes as “a reflection of what many regular users would travel on this road anyway”. As site manager at Mighty River Domain, she regularly drives on Hydro Rd, a stretch of which – from the water treatment plant, along the Karapiro Dam and up towards the village – was proposed to reduce from 100kmph to 20kmph.

“I travel this piece all hours of the day and night after functions and events and it is a piece I am always very cautious about – it can be very dangerous,” she said.

“Given it is the main access entry to Mighty River Domain we see a variety of users. Overseas tourists in motorhomes now get advanced warning of recommended speed for this steep and windy piece, not to mention long trailers after many of our rowing regattas.

“I’m personally very pleased to see this piece of road have its speed signage reduced.”

The changes, which are open for public feedback until March 8, have been supported by NZ Police, New Zealand Transport Agency (NZTA) and New Zealand Automobile Association (AA). They follow council’s 2018 Safer roads, safer Waipā campaign, where nearly 60 per cent of respondents said they felt speed made their road unsafe.

More information and the chance to make a submission is available at council offices or online at www.waipadc.govt.nz/our-council/Haveyoursay.

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