A campaign by a West Ryde school community – backed by The Weekly Times – has been won with Ryde City Council spending around $750,000 to make their street safe.
Urged by P&C members from local schools and childcare centres, the council has just completed the major upgrade to Winbourne Street in West Ryde that includes road widening measures, new kiss and ride zones, two new raised pedestrian crossings, speed humps and clearer line markings.
Ryde Clr Jerome Laxale (ALP) praised the West Ryde school community’s action on road safety and said he is thrilled with the outcome.
“Together we’ve made a dangerous street safer and I especially want to acknowledge the work of the schools P&C as well as The Weekly Times, which supported the campaign for a safer street from the outset and published news about the danger.
“The danger was, in fact, so bad that a Winbourne Streets lollipop lady had been struck by a car, twice !”
Although an issue for several years, street safety in Winbourne Street only rose to prominence in the last two as a result of a new childcare centre proposal.
First raised by Clr Laxale, the road safety measures are now supported by all councillors.
“Although the P&C groups had been calling for road safety measures for a while and it had been a bit of a battle on the council to get them,” Clr Laxale said.
“Then the childcare centre proposal came to us and raised the likelihood of more cars parked on street, in a narrow street around school the arrival and leaving times for two schools.
“The Weekly Times played a big role in winning this and I’m delighted I was approached and was able to help deliver on road safety.”
Although the new works make Winbourne Street safer, safety is ultimately a responsibility of parents and students who are urged to hold the hands of younger children and to be aware of buses outside Marsden High School.
“One of the benefits of the road widening is that it allows more room for buses,” Clr Laxale said.
“Significantly, the new, raised pedestrian crossing are well marked and located right outside the schools, so the works have a striking visual impact on slowing traffic and warning drivers to take caution.”
More room for buses – Ryde Clr Jerome Laxale inspects the recently completed road safety works in Winbourne Street West Ryde last Friday. TWT on-the-spot PHOTO