Shire seeks funds to fix road black spots
THE Surf Coast Shire is seeking up to $1.3 million in federal funding to improve five high-accident sections of road in the municipality.
At their meeting on September 28, councillors resolved to authorise officers to pursue grant applications to the 2022-23 Black Spot Program.
The projects for roads within the shire’s own road network were chosen after discussions with the Department of Transport. They are:
* 4.5km of Atkins Road between Buckley Road South and Mathisons Road – safety improvements to include barrier at high risk locations, intersection lighting improvements, raised reflective pavement markers and improved signs and delineation up to $500,000
* 3km of Ghazeepore Road between Blackgate Road and Coombes Road – safety improvements to include guard fence, line marking and localised widening, guide post road delineation works up to $350,000
* 4.5km of Cape Otway Road West between Deans Marsh Road and Kildean Road – safety improvements to include guard fence, speed reduction along with line marking and signage works up to $225,000
* 1km of Horseshoe Bend Road between Quay Boulevard and South Beach Road – safety improvements to include raised hump, roundabout modifications, gateway treatment, line marking and green pavement treatments up to $200,000, and
* 215m of Beach Road between Surf Coast Highway and Kooringa Place – safety treatments to include raised crossing, line marking and lane narrowing works up to $90,000.
If successful, these projects would be fully funded through the Department of Transport, with the shire not required to contribute.
Cr Adrian Schonfelder, who successfully moved the motion, said he was very happy that Horseshoe Bend Road would be included in the grant applications.
“It’s a very important road for cyclists and it’s becoming even more popular as a road, I imagine.
“It’s very important to have Black Spot funding round opportunities, and I thank the council officers for their work in relation to this.”
Cr Mike Bodsworth said applications to the fund were based on crash data, but this had its limitations.
“There would be plenty of people out in the community who would be aware of risky sections of road that they worry about, but to note that if the crash data doesn’t back up those worries or those risks, Black Spot funding won’t apply.
“It is a bit of a shame that, at least in theory, there could be really risky situations out on roads where crashes are yet to occur but could well occur in the future and could be quite foreseeable, and I guess that’s another thing for us to keep an eye on, and try to advocate over time for a risk-based approach as well as an accident data-based approach.”
The officers’ report noted the shire has other known accident hotspots within the region, such as the Great Ocean Road and the Deans Marsh Road/Cape Otway Road intersection on the Princes Highway, but these are not locally managed intersections or roads so the council was unable to attract any funding through the Black Spot Program.