Woodend intersection dubbed a ‘lesson in irresponsible planning’

A notorious Woodend intersection has been dubbed “a lesson in irresponsible planning” as it moves up Macedon Ranges Council’s priority list.
Users of the High/Urquhart Street intersection have reported an alarming number of ‘near misses’ and say it’s the result of “development not done right”.
They contend with main street congestion, a confusing layout with several turning points and high volumes of traffic accessing service hot spots including the town’s only supermarket and train station.
Mayor Janet Pearce said complaints about the intersection traffic had been persistent since supermarket giant Coles re-positioned itself at the busy corner in November last year.
“It’s been over a year and the issues still exist. I don’t want to wait until there is a major accident,” Cr Pearce said.
Cr Pearce raised alarm at the council’s November meeting and urged council to advocate for safety improvements with Regional Roads Victoria.
Woodend’s Garry Dudderidge said council couldn’t afford to wait any longer with chaotic traffic forcing road users to change their route around the town and resulting in an increase of traffic in nearby residential streets. His Firebird Motors workshop is opposite the intersection and customers have aired their frustrations.
“Traffic gets banked up and it turns into complete chaos. People try to avoid the intersection and all of a sudden there is more traffic using little back streets that never got used before,” Mr Dudderidge said.
“It’s a complete shemozzle and something has got to be done about it.”
While complaints have increased about traffic in the past year, the intersection has long presented problems.
Macedon Ranges Residents Association secretary Christine Pruneau said past planning and development around the intersection had been “irresponsible”.
“It’s a lesson in what happens when you want the development more than you want it be done properly,” she said.
“This intersection and development around it was always going to be a problem but no one has wanted to deal with it. This is the sort of outcome you get when development is not done right.”
Macedon Ranges Council will meet with Regional Roads Victoria to discuss safety concerns before January 30.

3 thoughts on “Woodend intersection dubbed a ‘lesson in irresponsible planning’

  • December 9, 2019 at 3:14 pm

    When the application/s for planning perrmits for first a Woolworths then the Coleswere filed, the dangers this intersection posed, ompounded by the close T-intersection at Brooke Street, were issues raised time and time by members of the community with both the then Council and with VicRoads. VicRoads continued to say that both intersections would pose absolutely no safety issues once the supermarket was built and operational. This is par for VicRoads and other governtment and semi-governmebt agencies – they ignore the experiece and understanding of local conditions by long time residents.

  • December 10, 2019 at 2:27 pm

    It is such a shame the council or Vic Roads did nothing about this issue years ago when we, the community brought the Anslow/High St intersection to their attention. We raised concerns about the logistics of ‘who has right of way’ etc. Near misses occur daily on this intersection. Vic roads came and spent a few hours (outside peak hour mind you) surveying the intersection and deemed it “safe”. Funny, when they left, there was an accident! Our proposal was to reduce the speed to 50km on High St. According to council, this could not be done as we have service roads (now take a look at High st Romsey who has the same setup and with this restriction, and where the traffic at intersections flow well). We also wanted roundabouts put in to control the flow of traffic and naturally reducing traffic speed for pedestrian and vehicle safety. They said the road was too narrow for this. Sorry, I do not agree to this as I have seen roundabouts on much narrower roads! Unfortunately, it is going to take another death of a pedestrian trying to cross the road or major vehicle fatality before anything will get done. Shame on you MRSC…

  • December 10, 2019 at 4:43 pm

    We need a Mini roundabout, which work very well in the UK, on much busier roads/intersections. Traffic moves in one direction and smoothly!


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