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Tuesday, April 23, 2024

Katoomba pedestrians to take centre stage in roads revamp

Katoomba Town Centre will become a High Pedestrian Activity Area (HPAA) next year, creating a safer environment for all road users, particularly pedestrians, cyclists and children, Blue Mountain City Council announced today.

HPAA’s are areas of high pedestrian activity near shopping strips, railway stations, bus interchanges and services where the maximum speed limit is 40km/h at all times. The different road environment helps to alert drivers to the lower speed limit and makes them aware of the presence of pedestrians moving about or near the road.

Mayor, Mark Greenhill says Katoomba Town Centre has always been a place for people, not just traffic.

“First and foremost, this is about improving pedestrian and road safety for everyone. In so doing it, this provides the foundation for many other flow-on benefits for the community and local businesses,” the Mayor said.

“Improving road safety is an important ingredient in how we grow a vibrant pedestrian environment – where people want to spend time, meet, gather and explore all that’s on offer locally.

“These important safety upgrades make sense for Katoomba Town Centre. They’ll help to improve the liveability and amenity of one of the Blue Mountains’ major pedestrian locations.”

Council says the first stage of the HPAA upgrade work in Katoomba Town Centre will take place in late January or early February 2023 and will include preparations for new street lighting at the pedestrian crossing on Parke Street. 

The existing street lights at this pedestrian crossing will be removed in the New Year so that new street lights can be installed when a new, raised crossing will also be constructed.

As part of the HPAA project, Katoomba Street, Bathurst Road and Parke Street will receive six separate traffic calming upgrades, to support a reduced speed limit of 40km/hr, including:

•    Raising four existing pedestrian crossings 
•    Significantly upgrading the intersection at Parke Street and Waratah Street, and
•    Installing an additional speed hump on Katoomba Street at Davis Lane.

The traffic calming upgrades will take place in early February 2023 and are expected to be completed by the end of March 2023, weather permitting.

The six traffic calming upgrades will be constructed in a sequence and at night in early 2023 to limit the disruption to pedestrians, motorists and businesses. A staging plan will be shared with the community before work commences, the Mayor said.

The project is fully funded by the NSW Government as part of the Transport for NSW Safer Roads Program. 

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