Work will begin on the Rankin Street Crossing at the corner of Templar Street next Wednesday, May 23, in a move that Forbes Shire Council Acting General Manager Max Kershaw says is needed for it to meet Australian standards.
The project was initially supposed to go ahead earlier, but with business owners on Rankin Street expressing concerns, it has been revised and pushed back. The project was initially going to see the curbs on both sides of the crossing brought out to be within around 3.2 metres from the middle of the road, while the curb on the corner of Rankin and Templar Streets was also going to be brought out a similar distance. Business owners on Rankin were concerned that the project would make Rankin Street too narrow for traffic to safely pass through, and had a meeting with Council on Wednesday May 4 to address their concerns. But Mr Kershaw said improvements had to be made, as the crossing did not meet Australian standards.
“Council was pleased to meet with the business owners, and took on board comments made at the least meeting, which lead to our revised plan,” he said. “We still had to make improvements to the crossing, as it did not meet Australian standards.”
Martin Cahill, owner of Cahill’s Footwear on Rankin Street, said while businesses on the road thought it would still be too narrow, it was good Council listened to the concerns of local businesses.
“We fear it will be dangerous not for pedestrians on the crossing, but for cars turning from Templar Street onto Rankin Street, across the crossing, and not having enough room to do so with traffic coming in the opposite direction,” he said.
“However we’re happy that Council took our concerns into consideration. They hadn’t consulted us before announcing the project, so hopefully now this won’t happen in future.”