Metro adresses road safety

2017-06-14 06:03

THE Nelson Mandela Bay Municipality (NMBM) has prioritised the construction of traffic calming measures across the city.

Since the beginning of the current financial year, the Roads and Transport Directorate has spent R3 million of its R3.5 million budget on the construction of 109 speed humps and raised pedestrian crossings on 58 streets across all wards.

According to NMBM Communications and Media Management Officer, Mthubanzi Mniki, the purpose of the speed humps is to improve the experience of road users in the metro and ensure safer roads for cyclists and pedestrians.

More importantly, the municipality seeks to create a safer environment for children, particularly in residential areas.

Before the implementation of any traffic calming measures, the municipality took into account requests received from residents and sought guidance from Ward Councillors.

“In the current financial year, the municipality allocated a budget of R60 000 per ward to meet traffic control and calming needs. The construction of these speed humps costs between R2 000 and R50 000 per speed hump, depending on the area and width of the road,” said Mniki.

“Should residents identify a need for traffic calming measures in their area of residence, they should consult their neighbours in order to reach consensus and write to the NMBM Executive Director of Infrastructure and Engineering.

“Once the municipality receives the request, it will check if at least more than 50% of the affected residents are in support of the petition,” Mniki said.

The municipality will then assess the road or area before the implementation of any traffic calming or control measures to ensure that the proposed request is in line with the rules and regulations that guide road safety.

The municipality will prioritise requests based on whether they are life-threatening, property-threatening or if they just cause an inconvenience to residents.

“Traffic calming measures are generally determined by the municipality’s Traffic Calming Policy, but in most cases they take the form of speed humps or raised pedestrian crossings,” Mniki said.

In the coming financial year, with a decreased R1 million budget allocated for all wards in the Metro, Councillor Rano Kayser, the portfolio Chairperson of Roads and Infrastructure, intends to place stronger focus on the Northern Areas and townships.

“The absence of speed humps, raised pedestrian crossings and other traffic calming measures have proven to be life-threatening, especially given the growing number of pedestrians on the roads and children who play in the streets,” Councillor Kayser said.

“I encourage residents to use all roads in the city in a safe and responsible manner for an improved experience for all road users.”

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