PLEASE NOTE: DRAFT – UNDER CONSTRUCTION!
Where: Causeway Road runs North-South through Ethelton & Exeter and between Semaphore Road and Bower Road. There are primary schools located adjacent to each end of the road with two railway stations and both new and old residential suburbs along its length. It is the major cycling link between Semaphore, Bower and Port Roads and carries both freight and commuter vehicles from the North (Le Fevre Peninsula and Northern Suburbs) and from Grand Junction and Port Roads (to the East and South), particularly now that heavy freight traffic through the Port Adelaide CBD is restricted.
Bicycle Provision & Use: Although both Bower and Semaphore Roads (at each end of Causeway Rd) have on-road cycling lanes, the link along Causeway Road is entirely without them. There is an older and very inadequate off-road shared pathway that runs for a short distance parallel to and on the Western side of Causeway Road between the Bower and Rennie Road junctions (where it stops at a car park opposite Ethelton Railway Station). This shared pathway connects to the Bower Road off-road path through a signaled (but poorly known and used) bicycle crossing at the Causeway/Bower Road intersection. The existing pathway is:
- narrow, poorly designed and equipped
- inadequately lit and signed
- indirect with poor ramp entries
- of inadequate length and of limited use as a secure bicycle route.
The BUG believes that children traveling to and from the area’s schools are at particular and significant risk on Causeway Road and should – as a matter of urgency – be provided with a far safer and more effective off-road cycling path. Given the immediate proximity of residential suburbs, schools and rail stations, provision of such offroad facilities will enhance both safety as well as more active and healthier lifestyles for all!
Bicycle traffic along Causeway Road enters from Semaphore Road, Mead Street (a Bike Direct route adjacent to the Semaphore Road intersection), Hart Street, Bower Road (and the Bower Road off-road path) and numerous adjoining residential streets and paths.
Traffic Environment: Causeway Road is a major heavy vehicle route. as well as a major connecting bicycle route for cyclists traveling to and from the schools, railway stations, Port Road and other commuting routes. Causeway Road remains a dangerous environment for bicycle users with a number of serious incidents and injuries occurring in recent years. There are many hazards associated with the current design of the road including:
- no bicycle or pedestrian-related signage or kerb-side or median refuges
- no provision of bike lanes
- poor lighting and restricted sightlines (especially in the morning and at dusk)
- dangerous slip lanes at each end with poor management of cycling space at mergers and junctions
- inadequate separation from heavy traffic
- an excessive speed limit (60km/h) that is often disregarded.
The PortBUGs Recommendations:
1. Main Roadway:
- provision of continuous bike lanes for the entire length of Causeway Road (with associated sealing of shoulders where kerbs are not present)
- provision of high quality off-road shared-use pathways and footpaths on at least the Western side of Causeway Road
- effective on and off-road lighting
- provision of secure bike parking at key locations (both railway stations and the bus interchange adjacent to Glanville Station)
- 50km/h speed limit with painted on-road and kerb-side signage signaling the presence of bicycle users
- more effective provisions for bicycle crossings at junctions and other points, including island refuges, kerb-side ramps and mid-road cycling and pedestrian refuges
- provision at junctions of colour-marked or separated bicycle turning lanes, widened roadways, forward-placement ‘bicycle boxes’ and suitable signage.
A planning study should consider possibilities for facilitating direct access from the Mead Street Bike Direct route to Causeway Road and associated off-road pathways, perhaps via the railway reserve. Appropriate linkages to the railway stations, to Hart Street and Jervois Bridge and to the proposed Harbour Loop Path should also be considered.
2. Causeway/ Bower Road Junction:
- provision of a colour-marked left turn bicycle lane
- provision of a forward placement ‘bicycle box’ to assist cyclist visibility
- provision of appropriate signs directing bicycle users – especially younger folk – to off road facilities.
- provision of appropriate, high-profile signage warning drivers of the presence of bicycle users.
3. Semaphore/Causeway Road Junction:
- southward extension of the bicycle slip lane on the Western side to provide ‘road space’ for cyclists and offer some measure of protection from fast-moving left-turn car traffic.
- provision of a forward-placement ‘bicycle box’ at the head of this slip-lane to assist cyclist visibility for waiting traffic.
- provision of a continuous, colour-marked bicycle turning lane through the left hand access lane to Semaphore Road.
- provision of suitable ramp-access to the off-road Bikeway
- provision of appropriate, high-profile signage warning drivers of the presence of bicycle users and the off-road bikeways.
4. Causeway Road Off-road Shared Path (Bower to Rennie Roads): The BUG recommends significant redesign to ensure the pathway:
- offers a continuous off-road connection between Bower and Semaphore Roads with effective connection to Hart Street and other local routes as well
- meets appropriate standards with regard to width, access ramps, signage and lighting
- safely links to major walking and cycling destinations at local rail stations and schools.
2.2. Causeway Road (Ethelton & Harbour Keys): Causeway Road has become the major shared vehicle, bicycle commuter and heavy transport route between Semaphore and the Le Fevre Penn. suburbs to the North and Grand Junction and Port Roads to the South and East. It sees a constant flow of heavy freight vehicles which is predicted to increase several-fold to 2020! Causeway Road is also adjacent to two railway stations, has a primary school at each end and serves several residential communities along its way. It is very clear that its design and provision is now quite out of step with its ‘mixed’ use!
There are no bicycle facilities at all on Causeway Road:
- no on-road marked bike lanes or other forms of traffic separation
- no bicycle warning signs for heavy-freight vehicles
- no crossing refuges or other guidance for bicycle users
- no speed limits appropriate for a mixed traffic zone
- no complementary effective off-road facilities or pathways for those unable or unwilling to use the roadway.
We note that while there is a short length of off-road, shared-use path at the Southern end, it lacks any useful user access or continuity, presents a significant ‘predictive’ safety hazard at night (being dark and isolated from the main thoroughfare) and is entirely substandard and out-of-date. Those footpaths that exist on either side are frequently broken or unmade, are generally poorly lit and often hazardous to use.
In terms of on-road bicycle use:
- there is no separation at all for bicycle users from vehicle traffic
- the road surface is generally in poor condition
- sight lines for heavy vehicle traffic are compromised by road-side infrastructure, poor lighting and lack of lane marking and bicycle/vehicle separation.
In general terms it appears that there has been no thought at all given to the obvious need for specific facilities for the many students and commuters who could (and do) use the roadway and footpaths to get to and from area’s schools and rail stations:
- there is only one pedestrian crossing on the road’s entire length (adjacent to the Ethelton rail station) despite multiple crossing needs and access requirements and the road’s continuous heavy freight use
- there is no evidence of either active or passive attempt to limit vehicle speeds (apart from a 60km/h limit) despite there several bicycle-related injuries and at least one death on Causeway Road in recent years.
From the PortBUG’s point of view, Causeway Road and its immediate environment have been neglected by both DPTI and the Port Adelaide/Enfield Council. In our view the current hazards encountered by vulnerable road users will inevitably be exacerbated by the further residential development planned around the Port River, by the community’s increasing use of active transport and by the greatly increased freight traffic predicted by 2020.
We ask that your office and department develop a comprehensive traffic management and safety improvement plan with an associated investment programme for Causeway Road (and surrounding reserves and pathways) with a particular view to enhancing safety, utility and amenity for pedestrians and bicycle users. At a minimum, we would hope to see provision of:
- on-road bicycle lanes and effective traffic separation on both sides of Causeway Road
- an off-road shared pathway running the full length of the roadway between Bower and Semaphore Roads (and connecting to existing their pathways and pedestrian crossings)
- appropriate standard footpaths on both sides of the roadway
- passive speed limiting infrastructure such as signage, median islands, lane narrowing and kerb-side projections with median crossing refuges
- much improved lighting, sightlines, crossings, median and kerb-side refuge provision and levels of safety for all road and pathway users.
In our view the general character of Causeway Road is currently more in keeping with a run-down industrial area than with what we understand is one of your Government’s more highly promoted redevelopment zones! We would therefore strongly encourage consideration of a slower speed zone more suitable to the road’s mixed-traffic use and proximity to schools, residential suburbs and new housing development. We would suggest a 50km/h limit!