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OPINION: Home trip south is a real grind

Traffic queues around the Villiers St roundabout after 3pm in Grafton.
Traffic queues around the Villiers St roundabout after 3pm in Grafton. Adam Hourigan

WHAT to do about the Villiers/Pound Sts roundabout?

Chances are if you work in Grafton and live on the south side of the bridge, the afternoon drive home is turning into quite the grind.

The source of the problem seems to be the last roundabout before the approach to the bridge on Fitzroy St, which simply cannot handle the volume of traffic heading south.

>> RELATED STORY: Motorists 'pull a swifty' to beat traffic congestion

During only 20 minutes of surveillance, The Daily Examiner witnessed myriad methods undertaken by drivers to try to beat the gridlock. Most found a legal loop-hole while there were a few testing their luck and choosing a less-than-kosher option.

Regardless of what driving etiquette locals find acceptable, something needs to be done in order to relieve the stress on not just the roundabout, but also the drivers trying to get across.

Wednesday afternoon was a perfect example of how the roundabout is failing and the issues it causes. An emergency service vehicle had been called out to an incident in Ulmarra, and with afternoon traffic at a standstill heading south over the bridge, the vehicle was forced to drive south on the wrong side of the road. Hats go off to the emergency service crew required to navigate that tricky situation in order to answer someone's call for help.

The Daily Examiner spoke with RMS, and they're onto the problem. But this situation might just be a case of short-term pain for long-term gain. In a little over three years, the second bridge should remove this issue for local drivers... hopefully.

 

Topics:  congestion emergency services grafton gridlock roundabout traffic



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