Traffic congestion spills over

Riding and walking to school has been tough for those in Farrell Street. Pictured are Finlae, Sienna, Layla and Ryder Sipthorp, Indiana and Phoenix Koester, Jake Henebery and Cody England.

Riding and walking to school has been tough for those in Farrell Street. Pictured are Finlae, Sienna, Layla and Ryder Sipthorp, Indiana and Phoenix Koester, Jake Henebery and Cody England.

Congestion on Gisborne's Station and Saunders Roads has turned nearby Farrell Street into a dangerous rat run.

Farrell Street residents have experienced traffic in the form of coach buses, trucks and other vehicles, all to avoid the notorious intersection on the main road.

Near misses for pedestrians and cyclists, and an increase in speeding and abusive motorists have been the boiling point for residents like Joanne de Ruiter.

"There's so much road rage and everyone is in a big rush, they don't seem to care, and they fly down Farrel Street to avoid the traffic at the Station/Saunders Road intersection," she said.

"Everyone just uses it as a drive-through and they cut the corner. People ride their bikes and walk along this road, it's just a matter of time before someone gets hit. We love it here, we love the facilities here, but the traffic is frightening."

One resident has experienced at least three drivers ending up on her front lawn because they have misjudged the L-bend.

For some, the increasing traffic and no footpaths or pedestrian walkways has presented too much of a risk to walk into town or to local schools.

"I think it's ridiculous that we have to drive to school, as the safer option, when we live only 700 metres away," father, Mark Sipthorpe said.

Farrell Street is also home to Sandra's Family Day Care, which now must consider carefully the children in its care, says owner Sandra Gruevski.

"The safety of this street is as important to parents as it is to me," she said.

The day care centre soon aims to embrace after school care as children in its care age, and this will involve walking to and from school, but there are fears for safety.

Solutions sought by residents include closure of one street end to reduce traffic and/or speed bumps to reduce traffic speed.

Residents are now hopeful that VicRoads' proposal for traffic lights at the Saunders/Station Road intersection might help to ease the traffic.

"Most of us don't care what it looks like, we just want something that will keep our kids safe," said mother of three, Clare Henebery.

VicRoads has informed that, if approved, the traffic lights project may take two years to complete. Macedon Ranges Shires Council has since informed residents the street is on a priority list for footpaths.