Bickering widens over space for buses along the street
THERE are no plans to widen road lanes for two-way traffic along Young St despite concerns there is not enough space for buses to pass parked vehicles without clipping wing mirrors.
Transport for Victoria, “an umbrella organisation” established by the Labor state government in April to oversee VicRoads and Public Transport Victoria, says the width of traffic lanes on Young St are 3 metres wide at the south end and 3.2 metres wide at the north end of the street.
Paths have been widened for pedestrians.
“The Young St redevelopment has been constructed according to all relevant guidelines and regulations, but on-street testing has demonstrated that further work needs to be undertaken to allow for all bus services to operate from the interchange,” Transport for Victoria spokesman Adrian Darwent said.
State Liberal MP for Hastings Neale Burgess, whose electorate includes part of Langwarrin, said in Parliament last Thursday (16 November) that transport projects initiated by the Andrews government are an “absolute shemozzle”.
“Buses [in Young St] … do not fit. From start to finish the total incompetence of this government and its local member were on show for all to see,” Mr Burgess said in Parliament.
“Then the final insult was that vital public transport no longer fits down the street.
“It is not as if these buses got fat overnight. The width of the buses was 255 centimetres [2.55 metres] before the project began and they were 255 centimetres when it ended. That is not a surprise. The roadway is 275-centimetres [2.75 metres] wide, leaving buses with just 10 centimetres on each side.”
“VicRoads has had to employ a full-time traffic warden just to try and get the buses down the street.”
“After 12 months of bungling and incompetence from the member for Frankston and the Premier, the community of Frankston was promised Young St would finally be back to normal by the end of October, but of course it was not.”
The Department of Transport confirmed turning circles are “a bit tight” when some buses enter new bus bays along Young St and modifications will follow.
“We’re getting on with finishing this important project to reinvigorate the area around Frankston station, which opened to traffic and pedestrians at the end of October,” Mr Darwent said.
“Recent bus trials have been completed and 10 of 20 services are now using the new interchange on Young Street, including the popular SmartBus services,” VicRoads metropolitan projects director Brendan Pauwels said earlier this month.
Public Transport Victoria is working on moving all bus services that previously travelled along the street before the $13 million street upgrade back to the Young St interchange.
Several traders in Young St, alongside Cr Steve Toms and Liberal Dunkley MP Chris Crewther, have been embroiled in a bitter war of words with Frankston Labor MP Paul Edbrooke over delays to the project.
A Facebook page cited by Mr Crewther and Cr Toms that stated 26 businesses had closed in central Frankston due to the Young St works delays has changed its name to include businesses “affected” by the works.