I AM hopeful that Lismore City Council this month will join me in supporting a community-driven initiative to improve pedestrian safety in Nimbin’s Cecil Street in the interim until a permanent bridge over the creek culvert can be funded and built.
Nimbin community leaders Diana Roberts and Michael Balderstone approached me to help address growing safety concerns from locals in the wake of the tragic death of Tonia Jansen and serious injury of her partner, now the subject of court proceedings.
Diana is currently overseas but knowing how good the former Lismore City councillor is at researching issues, I did not hesitate to lend my support to a delegation of three other Nimbin women who made a well-received deputation to the Council’s Traffic Advisory Committee on June 19.
The delegation was headed up by Teresa Biscoe, who is co-ordinator of the Nimbin Community Centre and vice president of the Nimbin Chamber of Commerce Incorporated, together with Cat Anderson (Chamber member/Hemp Embassy manager/Cecil Street resident) and Robyn Francis, owner of Djanbung Gardens and Cecil Street resident.
They had the strong backing of the Nimbin Advisory Group, Nimbin Chamber of Commerce Incorporated, Nimbin A&I Society, Nimbin Community Centre Incorporated, Nimbin Headers Sports Club, Nimbin Preschool, Nimbin CWA, Djanbung Gardens and Nimbin Physical Activities Centre.
The Traffic Advisory Committee now will recommend to Lismore City Council’s ordinary meeting on Tuesday July 16 that its design services team prepare a plan to install the following interim measures for Cecil Street:
- The existing travel lanes at the Cecil Street culvert be converted to one way/one lane traffic in conjunction with a protected pedestrian thoroughfare on the northern side of Cecil Street.
- Provision of a give way sign and relevant signage for eastbound traffic.
- The existing traffic calming device be retained and included as part of the interim measure treatment.
The committee will also recommend that a response be provided to representatives of the Nimbin community and that community consultation be undertaken.
It will recommend that funding be sought from NSW Transport, Roads & Maritime under the NSW Safer Roads Fatal Crash Response Program 2019/20 for installation of a pedestrian bridge on Cecil Street.
The committee would review the proposed interim measures in December this year.
I believe this is a good start towards what the delegation advocated — better forward planning and consultation with the community for the development of safe pedestrian access along the length of Cecil Street.
Cecil Street is set to become busier once Alternative Way links Sibley Street with Cecil Street and approved subdivisions in Cecil Street are completed.
I am planning to visit Nimbin on Wednesday July 24 to meet with local residents to discuss a range of issues of concern raised by the Nimbin Advisory Group.
Interpreting the recent state Budget was an exercise in trying to match up the Berejiklian-Barilaro Government’s election commitments with budget papers scant on detail.
I had been following up with various Ministers on the NSW Nationals’ suite of election commitments made during the campaign for different parts of the electorate of Lismore.
This is what any newly-elected MP worth their salt would do on behalf of the community groups and organisations anxious for news that funding was locked in so they could get on with their projects.
Deputy Premier and Nationals leader John Barilaro wrote back recently, confirming that the Liberals and Nationals Government will honour all election commitments.
“Thank you for bringing this matter to my attention,” Mr Barilaro wrote.
I can only take him at his word.
As a bit of insurance though, I have compiled a spreadsheet of all election commitments and will hold the Government to account if there is any slippage in delivering them.
Many locals have commented favourably on the new signage which has gone up at the electorate office on the corner of Conway and Carrington streets, Lismore.
Thanks go to Roger Kelly, of Kelly Signs and Designs, for a wonderful job. He’s been in the signwriting game for almost half a century and I like to support local trades and businesses wherever possible.