Quiet Lanes - Westbury
What are Quiet Lanes?
Quiet lanes are minor roads which have been designated by local councils to pay special attention to the needs of walkers, cyclists, horse riders and other vulnerable road users, and to offer protection from speeding traffic. Cars are not banned from Quiet Lanes and the use of Quiet Lanes is shared.
Measures such as lower speed limits (30km/hr) and discrete road signs aim to encourage drivers to slow down and be considerate to more vulnerable users who can in turn use and enjoy country lanes in greater safety, with less threat from speeding traffic.
Why is Meander Valley Council considering Quiet Lanes?
Speeding traffic blights many villages and has led to numerous collisions and fatalities. Fatal car crashes occur most frequently on rural roads and it is no surprise that speeding traffic has a significant impact on people's quality of life. A Quiet Lane may not be the most appropriate solution to motorists persistently driving at excessive speed, but they can be part of a package of measures to improve transport choices.
Quiet Lanes can help make country lanes feel safer, pleasant and less intimidating to pedestrians, cyclists, horse riders and all who enjoy them, by aiming to reduce the risk of collisions and reclaim their tranquillity and local character.
Comments received by Westbury community:
Westbury Working Together would like to see recreation areas connected from the Town Common through to the Showgrounds.
Westbury Primary School would like to have safer access between the school and the recreation ground.
Village Green residents would like to see reduced speed limits in Lonsdale Promenade.
Will Quiet Lanes act as a form of traffic calming?
Measures can be taken to help deliver the aims of Quiet Lanes but these should be in keeping with the local character of the area. Examples include varying verge maintenance, soft landscaping, removal of road signs, road surface treatments or even planting grass in the middle of the road.
Traditional traffic calming measures such as speed cushions, humps and high visibility signs are often more appropriate to city areas.
Who has priority on a Quiet Lane?
Council and community groups would like to see vulnerable road users have priority right of way. While motorised traffic may use a Quiet Lane they should respect the presence of walkers, cyclists and horse riders who should have priority. In the meantime, publicity, community involvement and other measures should ensure drivers take even more care when travelling along a Quiet Lane.
How are Quiet Lanes enforced to ensure that drivers drive slowly and considerately?
Quiet Lanes are essentially self-enforcing. Enforcement largely depends on advertising the Quiet Lanes and maintaining public awareness about their purpose. This requires a continuous programme of promotion in order that all in the community and visitors to the area know that Quiet Lanes exist and what they are seeking to achieve. Mobile speed cameras might be used by local police forces, although resources for this are likely to be scarce.
Frequently those motorists travelling at higher speeds come from the local area and this reinforces the need for local community support for Quiet Lanes as they are developed and implemented.
... Have Your Say
Council is seeking to gauge community support for this concept and welcomes any suggestions or comments on the use of Quiet Lanes within the Meander Valley muncipality.
The township of Westbury is currently being investigated as a suitable contender for the introduction of Quiet Lanes. Feedback from the community is sought regarding recommendations of roads in and around Westbury that would be considered appropriate for Quiet Lane status.
To provide Email feedback please contact council at email@example.com or phone Beth Williams on 6393 5312.