Road Safety

Bizarre Planning Laws Result in Absurd Half-Width Streets in Western Sydney

Main image to the post Bizarre Planning Laws Result in Absurd Half-Width Streets in Western Sydney

In Western Sydney, developers are finding themselves in a predicament due to planning laws that allow the construction of half-width streets. These narrow roads, only wide enough for one car to pass at a time, are causing inconveniences and safety concerns for residents. The situation is particularly evident in Tallawong, where hundreds of residents in six-storey apartment complexes are grappling with the challenges of sharing a one-lane road for over three years.

The local councils and state government in Western Sydney are caught in a blame game over the absurd street designs that have emerged. Residents like Gloria from Ayla Street express their frustrations as they face the daily struggle of dealing with oncoming traffic on these cramped streets. The state government, particularly Warren Kirby, Member for Riverstone, criticizes the poorly constructed planning controls that allow developers to create unsatisfactory communities in Sydney’s western suburbs.

One problematic aspect of the current planning regulations is the lack of consideration for situations where neighboring landowners refuse to sell, leaving streets half-developed. The narrative of incomplete street constructions is visible not just in Tallawong but also in Rouse Hill, with areas encircled by narrow roads that hinder smooth traffic flow. The council and developers seem to be at odds, with shifts of blame occurring between parties as confusion reigns over responsibility for the inadequate street designs.

Residents like Vineet Gambhir are finding it challenging to navigate the half-width streets, especially during peak hours when congestion worsens. The anxiety around safety concerns, such as emergency vehicle access in case of a fire, looms large as the inadequate street designs could potentially impede quick response times. The fragmented development pattern in some areas of Western Sydney, approved by previous governments, is now leading to major disruptions and inconveniences for residents trying to navigate these half-width roads.

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May 21, 2023 | 05:09