Bicycle Network: Metro Routes
North: Canning Street
The recent upgrade to the Canning Street Pidgon Street roundabout is being reviewed.
Getting across @ Pigdon / Canning
15 August 2010. The City of Yarra is making further changes to the problematic intersection at Pigdon and Canning streets in Carlton, one of the busiest routes into the City.
The Canning Street route is very popular, but has long been marred by the risk of collision when city-bound riders from the north encounter drivers coming from east to west.
The west-heading drivers are required to give way to city-bound riders at this roundabout, but often don't.
Solving this problem is a significant challenge to the City of Yarra, which has been working steadily to improve the route including widening the lanes and painting them green at intersections.
The Council has sought to reduce the risk by slowing down the traffic along Pigdon as it crosses Canning.
The shape of the roundabout has been modified to make it harder for east west traffic to speed through the intersection and Stop signs were installed to further encourage drivers to watch out for riders.
Although these changes have improved the situation for riders at the intersection, they have had unintended negative consequence to other road users.
In addition the City has decided that the Stop signs need to be removed, as technically the new shape is still a ‘roundabout’. The new shape of the roundabout will remain unchanged.
The City has asked Bicycle Network Victoria to get the message out to riders about this change to the signage and to ask you to pay particular attention when you are using this intersection. Staff from Bicycle Network Victoria and Yarra will be approaching riders on the street this week to highlight the changes.
It is time for more powerful solutions to be considered by the council, particularly the installation of raised zebra crossings across Pigdon Street on the west and east side of Canning. This treatment has proved effective in number of locations including at the South Melbourne market at Coventry and Cecil Streets.
Alternatively, painted zebras could be utilized as at used at Faraday and Cardigan in Carlton. Such a treatment would reduce the risk to riders on Canning and assist pedestrians crossing Pigdon.
The question the Council faces is whether to invest further in this intersection, possibly even spending many hundreds of thousands of dollars to signalise it. Although riders may prefer other problematic locations for priority improvement.
Bicycle Network Victoria has asked the Council to make strong representations to the VicRoads Principal Bicycle Network program to upgrade Rathdowne Street. This provides an alternative to Canning for some riders and is being developed at the southern end by the City of Melbourne.
Rathdowne is identified in the Yarra Bike plan but currently at a lower priority than Canning. Profiled linemarking or rumble strips and green paint would further improve this route which crosses Pigdon Street at a set of signals.
A forward step would be the development of a regional strategy for the north east approach to the CBD that takes into account the Principal Bicycle Network and the works envisaged by the Cities of Yarra, Darebin, Moreland and Melbourne. To that end Bicycle Network Victoria is keen to work with the Council to develop an understanding of which routes people are using in the area, and what rider’s opinions of those routes are.