Design for second bridge and Hwy to overcome 'tricky spot'
THE intersection of Iolanthe St and the Pacific Hwy in South Grafton has officially been labelled a shocker.
Clarence Valley Mayor Richie Williamson offered this description of it yesterday.
"I've never seen a crash there, but I've seen plenty of near misses," he said.
Cr Karen Toms, who has been a member of the Clarence Valley Council Traffic Committee, said driver vigilance was probably the only reason there had not been accidents at the intersection.
"As far as I know there's never been a major accident there and it can only be that drivers take more care because it's such a tricky spot," she said.
Daily Examiner readers have also identified the intersection as one of the worst in the region.
The much maligned crossing is an intersection with Spring and Iolanthe streets and the highway coming together in one tight area.
It's a traffic-rich environment with cars heading to fast food restaurants Hungry Jacks and McDonald's and businesses like Bunnings, Super Cheap Auto and the recently opened BCF.
Cr Williamson said traffic flows were considered with council approved development applications.
He said as more developments were approved for that area, there would be more pressure on the road.
But he said there was good news with the planning for the second Grafton Bridge and the Pacific Hwy upgrade offered improvements to the intersection.
"Because it is an intersection with the Pacific Highway, it's something the RMS is dealing with," Cr Williamson said.
He said the new State Government had promised work would begin in its first term and expected those promises to be kept.
The RMS confirmed Iolanthe St is proposed to be upgraded as part of the additional crossing of the Clarence River at Grafton project.
The new crossing would be about 70 metres downstream of the existing Grafton bridge and connect the junction of the Pacific and Gwydir highways via Iolanthe St in South Grafton with Villiers St in Grafton via Pound St.
Iolanthe St is proposed to be two lanes in each direction with a signalised pedestrian crossing to improve safety.
There would be left-in, left-out turning restrictions to properties along Iolanthe St with roundabouts allowing for access to businesses.
As part of the proposal, the Iolanthe St intersection with Spring St and the Pacific Hwy would be upgraded to meet increased traffic demands and improve safety.