Tuesday, July 16, 2024

Christchurch to trial lane closure around hospital

Christchurch City Council will this week trial a traffic lane closure around the city’s hospital.

The two-week trial will begin on Wednesday on Hagley and Riccarton Avenues around Hospital Corner and will scope the feasibility of permanently removing the lane to increase on-street parking, Council said in a statement.

The first week of the trial will just see the kerbside lane – on the Hagley Park side of the road – closed, while the second week will additionally include rephasing of the traffic lights.

“This trial will help us understand the impact of permanently closing the kerbside lanes around the Hospital, including showing the effects on traffic flow, congestion levels, overall feasibility and how this might affect everyone using the road,” said Council Transport Operations Manager, Stephen Wright.

“The trial will be marked out by cones so there will be no permanent change to signage or road markings. This means we can easily end the trial if we get feedback that something isn’t working.”

Mr Wright said there would not be any loss of parking throughout the two-week trial, with no additional parking offered either. 

He said people are encouraged to use the area as they ordinarily would, so that the data collected would reflect typical daily use.

“We anticipate that drivers, cyclists, scooter users and pedestrians will only experience a very small delay as a result of this trial and we’ve worked with Hato Hone St John to ensure their access to the Emergency Department is not affected,” he said.

The work was approved by Christchurch City Councillors following recommendations from Mayor, Phil Mauger and Councillor Keown.

“Once the trial ends, we’ll analyse the full set of data. A report will then go to the elected Council to decide if the lane will be closed permanently to create more car parks,” Mr Wright said.

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