‘Fix traffic’ cry for Riddell

Riddells Creek residents are urgently calling for a town traffic management as they brace for a population forecast of 6000 people.

Traffic troubles are mounting in Riddells Creek and locals warn they must be tackled before development takes hold.
Residents are urgently calling for a town traffic management and movement plan as they brace for a population forecast of 6000 people, becoming a ‘district town’, by 2036.
Riddells Creek’s Ross Colliver last week called on Macedon Ranges Council to begin vital planning now.
Concerns highlight Sutherland Street, bottle-necked traffic on Main Road, and Station Street, which is congested with peak supermarket and railway station traffic.
“As you get to Station Street you’re on your own as a pedestrian and you’re on your own as a person parking – it’s precarious,” Mr Colliver said.
“Issues now centre on the parking and movement immediately adjacent to the existing supermarket where there’s a conflict between that movement and cars going to and from the railway station.”
“This is a hot issue in town. The town’s growing rapidly and unless we plan to manage the traffic in this space we’re going to have a difficult time.”
Residents are seeking a plan that considers traffic movement as well as cyclists, pedestrians, all-ability access, commercial delivery vehicles and other uses in the heart of the town – resident geese included.
Traffic and transport emerged as one of three priority issues raised during public submissions to a controversial 1290-lot development on 130 hectares at Amess Road last year.
Lyn Hovey, from community group Getting Riddell Right, said traffic was also a huge part of why so many objectors emerged to plans for a large supermarket development on the south side of Station Street.
“The fundamental issue to a lot of these developments is how people will get around because the town has grown,” she said.
“There are a lot of traffic issues at the moment – already the town is comprised. As the population grows it’s fundamental that elected representatives support the planning work that needs to be done rather than leaving it up to developers who might cut corners.”
Some residents have suggested one-way streets to improve traffic flow and others a bypass of the town to protect it from becoming “just another indistinguishable Melbourne suburb”.
Most agree any town traffic management and movement should extend into the next century.
Resident George Wright urged planning for traffic to also consider bushfire risk to the town.
“Riddells Creek is very poorly provided with transport corridors to cope with bushfire emergencies and is very vulnerable,” he said.
“I hope this is a spur for looking at a Riddells Creek township protection plan against bushfire as recommended for high risk areas in the Royal Commission into the 2009 Black Saturday bushfires.”
Riddells Creek residents are seeking funds for a traffic plan from the 2020/21 Macedon Ranges Council budget and their submissions will be considered as part of the council’s budget deliberations.
Mr Colliver said it was simple, “We’re at a fork in the road for Riddells Creek: we either have a 4WD rodeo in the middle of town or we have a town centre where people can stop and talk to each other and stand in the sunshine and enjoy the place they live. It’s as stark as that.”