Channel Hwy - Taroona, Bonnet Hill & Kingston

 

Bonnet Hill

Towards Tyndall Rd May2017carWMay 2017. The Department of State Growth identified two sites for safety improvements in the 2016/17 construction season and the information on progress is available on the State Growth website.  Construction commenced in December 2016 and is nearing completion.  The final stage of work involves asphalting and line marking and is weather dependent. Work is anticipated to be completed by the end of May 2017.

The two sites are located at:

Site E: Derwent Rise Embankment – 350 metre uphill section either side of the Baringa Road junction.   Work started in December 2016 just down from the Baringa Road junction area up to the sealed bus-stop above the junction. Construction and sealing work has been completed, line-marking will be undertaken from the end of the existing cycle lane up to the sealed bus-stop above the junction. 

Site F: Tyndall Embankment – 450 metre uphill lane. These works commenced in February 2017 and will be completed by the end of May 2017. See photo above.

Further safety improvements are programmed for the 2017/18 construction season.  The final stages will be undertaken in 2018/19 following completion of design details on these more technically challenging sections.

Works completed in 2015/16 construction season included shoulder widening at four key locations:

  • Site A: Just past Proctors Road to Tyndall Road junction – 750 metres (uphill lane);
  • Site B: Just past Illawong Crescent to just past Shot Tower – 1010 metres (uphill lane);
  • Site C: Harpers Road to Lynden Road – 300 metres (uphill lane);
  • Site D: Taronga Road to Bonnie Brae Road– 100 metres (uphill lane).

 

June 2016. Shoulder sealing work has been carried out on part of the uphill section between Taroona and the Shot Tower (Part B on the map). The shoulder is now wide enough for cars to park in it so 'no parking' signage or linemarking needs to be installed.

Feb 2016. Linemarking has been installed on the first section of widened sealed shoulder from Proctors Road. Rob Sheers from Kingborough BUG who has been lobbying for this project for a long time is happy with the works and reports that "innovative solutions were employed to gain adequate width. With this section there is now 1.4km out of 5.2km done". In some locations the centre line has been moved across to create space. The next section to be worked on will be in the vicinity of the Shot Tower.

BeforeAfter Feb2016

Jan 2016. Work has almost complete on the first stage of sealing shoulders on uphill sections of the Channel Hwy. 

Bonnet Hill beforeafterDec2015

Dec 2015. Details on the project can be found on the State Growth website.

2015/16 planned construction works

Site A:      Just past Proctors Road to Tyndall Road junction – 750metres (uphill lane)

Site B:      Just past Illawong Crescent to just past Shot Tower – 1010metres (uphill lane)

Site C:      Harpers Road to Lynden Road – 300meters (uphill lane)

Site D:      Taronga Road to Bonnie Brae Road– 100meters (uphill lane)

Further investigative and design works are planned on other constrained sections for 2015/16.

 

Nov 2015. Planning work is underway to install sealed shoulders on uphill sections of the Channel Hwy over Bonnet Hill. The sealed shoulders will provide space for slow uphill riders, making it easier for motor vehicles to overtake. Work is expected to commence before Christmas and be complete by mid-2016. During the works period all road users will need to show patience and and tolerance when using the Channel Hwy over Bonnet Hill.

From the Department of State Growth website:

"The State Government has committed to investing $1 million to improve the safety for all road users travelling along the Channel Highway in Bonnet Hill. The Bonnet Hill safety improvements are part of a $5 million package of road works designed to improve key cycling routes in Tasmania.

$500,000 has been allocated to commence the Bonnet Hill safety improvements this summer (2015/16). The shoulder sealing and line marking work is based on a design strategy outlined in the Kingborough Council's report On Road Bike Lane – Channel Highway Preliminary Design 2009.

Works scheduled for 2015/16 will include shoulder widening at four key locations and investigative and design work for another four identified sites to be constructed in the next round of works.  The safety improvements will provide increased space for all road users (including cyclists) to safely travel through the uphill sections of Bonnet Hill."

 

Aug 2014. The Bonnet Hill Community Association had their petition tabled in Parliament on 17 August 2014. They have received letters of support from Metro, RACT, and the Mayor of Kingborough, Graham Bury. The Kingborough Chronicle reported on the handover of the petition. KBUG representatives Cr Flora Fox and Rob Sheers also met with the Premier to discuss the need for improvements on this road.

May 2014. The Bonnet Hill Community Association is progressing with a petition for extending the sealed shoulders between Taroona and Proctors Road to improve road safety. They have been collecting signatures and are encouraging everyone who uses the Channel Hwy over Bonnet Hill (drivers, bike riders) to sign. Click here to sign the online survey.

People driving on Bonnet Hill need to cross double white lines in order to leave adequate room when overtaking bike riders.  This has lead to some near misses between motor vehicles. Sealed shoulders installed strategically on uphill sections would allow safer overtaking. See The Mercury article.

Apr 2013. As part of a road reseal, DIER has installed a sealed shoulder on the Channel Hwy between Browns River Bridge and Proctors Road (near the golf course). This section of roadway contained tight bends and blind corners so the sealed shoulder provides a degree of separation from motor vehicles and increases safety for riders. There were a few hiccups along the way including a linemarking error (which has been corrected) but it is now an improved cycling environment.

Dec 2012. Ministers O'Byrne and McKim sent a letter to Kingborough Bicycle Users Group to notify them that work is commencing in November "to provide a sealed shoulder on the uphill section of Bonnet Hill between Browns River Bridge and the Proctors Road intersection as part of DIER's safety improvement and road resurfacing works program. The shoulder works are being undertaken partially as a result of Kingborough Bicycle Users Group identifying this section of Bonnet Hill as being the most difficult and intimidating for cyclists to negotiate." The works will involve the creation of a 1.2 - 1.5m wide sealed shoulder to provide increased road space and make road sharing safer and easier for all users.

Dec 2010 - Scoping report complete A consultant was appointed to prepare a scoping report which identifies what needs to be investigated in order for a preliminary plan to be developed. Detailed investigation required include drainage, Aboriginal heritage, environmental and geotechnical investigations and a full 3D design needs to be prepared. KBUG will continue to source funding for the next planning stage of the project.

Dec 2009 - Preliminary design plans prepared The consultant gave a briefing to representatives from K-BUG, CyclingSouth, Sport & Recreation Tasmania and DIER on the preliminary design plans which identify options for the installation of uphill bike lanes.

Nov 2009 - Consultant appointed to prepare plans A consultant has been appointed to prepare design plans for the project and a cost estimate. The scope of the project is from Browns River in Kingston to the end of the existing Taroona bike lanes.

Oct 2009 - Road survey complete Council has called for tenders to design and cost the project. K-BUG representatives rode with Premier David Bartlett over Bonnet Hill on Ride to Work Day in October. The Premier indicated his support for the project and willingness to match federal funding for construction. K-BUG also met with Metro and the Executive Director of Sport & Recreation Tasmania to brief them on the project and gain their support. RACT has written a support letter for the project to the Premier and Minister for Transport.

June 2009 - Council to coordinate road survey  -Kingborough Council has arranged for a contractor to carry out a road survey and has allocated an additional $20,000 in the budget for the Bonnet Hill project. Once the survey is completed the next step is to get a design with costings prepared.

April 2009 - Meeting with Minister for Transport, Graeme Sturgess. K-BUG representatives met with the Minister to discuss the requirement for a survey to be carried out of the Bonnet Hill route. K-BUG believe DIER should carry out the survey, which is an additional expense to the engineering design.

December 2008 - Premier David Bartlett announces $5,000 funding for project. As part of the State Government Tracks, Trails and Bikeways initiative, K-BUG received $5,000 towards the cost of design for uphill bike lanes.
 
October 2008 - Successful Sport & Recreation Minor Grants Program application - K-BUG, in conjunction with CyclingSouth, successfully applied for $5,000 grant from Sport & Recreation to undertake the engineering design and costing of the proposed installation of uphill bicycle lanes on Bonnet Hill.
 
June 2007 - Investigation for cycle-friendly improvements of Channel Hwy over Bonnet Hill
CyclingSouth and members of the Kingborough Bicycle User Group (K-BUG) carried out a site visit of the Channel Hwy between Kingston and Taroona to identify possible options for improving the safety of cyclists who use this route. The route was divided into 4 sections, with the uphill section between Kingston and Tyndall Rd identified as the highest priority because of blind corners. For much of the route there appears to be sufficient gravel shoulders on at least one side of the road to allow for sealing and realigning the centre line to create an uphill sealed shoulder for cyclists to use. The next step is for CyclingSouth and K-BUG to meet with professional staff from Kingborough Council to determine if the recommended treatments are viable. This site visit is scheduled for late July 2007.
 

Taroona

Jan 2014. Linemarking for the bike lanes has been reinstated after works to install a pipeline along the roadway have finished.

Apr 2009. Kingborough Council has developed plans to istall several pedestrian refuges along sections of the Channel Hwy in Taroona. As part of the project the roadway will be widened at these locations to provide space to maintain the bike lanes.

Apr 2008. In Taroona, Council has eliminated a squeeze point for cyclists at the pedestrian refuge outside Taroona Primary School. The footpath has been upgraded and the road widened, eliminating the need for cyclists to 'take the lane' through this section.

Kingston

Oct 2015. Cycling South met with representatives from State Growth and Kingborough Council to look at options to widen the bike lanes along the Channel Hwy between Summerleas roundabout and Huntingfield roundabout. The road is scheduled for resurfacing which provides opportunity to modify the linemarking to make the bike lanes wider by trimming space from the wide centre median.

Apr 2008. The Channel Hwy through the Kingston shopping area has been upgraded and council has taken the opportunity to provide for cyclists within the scope of the project. Bike lanes have been included in the design and have now been marked on the road between Summerleas Rd and John St. The design will not only provide designated space for bike riders but it will also calm traffic and improve the area for all road users.

Jun 07. Council has released plans for an upgrade of the Channel Hwy between Summerleas Rd and John St in Kingston. The plans include improved streetscape and traffic calming, as well as a bike lane in both directions on the Channel Hwy. When complete, people on bicycles will have improved access to the Kingston shopping area.

Kingston Bypass

Aug 09. It appears that the recommendations made by KBUG and CyclingSouth have been included. The multi-lane roundabout at Huntingfield will be problematic for cyclists but is difficult to address the issues without replacing the roundabout with signals. Pedestrian and cycling facilities including: o Extension of the pedestrian underpass adjacent to the existing Kingston High School;

  • Reinstatement of the shared path and footpath on Summerleas Road overpass;
  • A 3.0 metre wide shared path on the northern side of Spring Farm Road and a 1.5 metre wide footpath on the southern side;
  • On road cycle lanes at the Algona Road roundabout;
  • oConstruction of a pedestrian underpass at Algona Road linking Huntingfield to the greater Kingston township; and
  • Extension of the Whitewater Creek Recreation trail from Summerleas Road to Spring Farm Road.

 

Apr 09. At a meeting with DIER, Kingborough Council staff and CyclingSouth the following was agreed on:
- Algona Rd - install underpass where the creek goes under the road approx 200m south of roundabout to provide for movement between Kingston and Huntington. There won't be a grade-separated crossing of Algona Rd at the roundabout but the alternative option is a good one for local cycle movement, particularly as the area develops (probably not so good for those travelling from Hobart to Margate).
- Summerleas Rd - wider roundabout at interchange to allow space for a refuge for the shared path along Summerleas Rd.
- Sealed shoulders on section of Channel Highway between Algona Rd roundabout and Maddocks Rd (where currently there is no sealed shoulder and a guard rail close to the edge of the road).
It was also requested that Kingborough Council staff prepare a concept plan of the roundabout at McDonalds to show the various approaches for bikes (ramps, bike lanes etc) to complete a continuous route between the existing bike lanes on both approaches to the roundabout on Channel Hwy.
Feb 09. The design proposes green bike lanes in the roundabout at the Channel Hwy/Algona Rd/bypass intersection and designated crossing points. See Detail of Algona Rd roundabout on the DIER website (1.4MB PDF)
Feb 09. The design proposes green bike lanes in the roundabout at the Channel Hwy/Algona Rd/bypass intersection and designated crossing points. Cycling groups have a number of concerns with the plans. See below:

 

Algona Rd roundabout - Large multi-lane roundabouts are highly problematic and risky for cyclists in general and traffic signals are preferable. Under the current plans for the bypass there are concerns that in morning peak times it will be virtually impossible for cyclists to access Kingston from the Margate direction using the green bike lanes due to the constant stream of traffic. An alternative will be for cyclists to continue along the bypass and exit at Summerleas Rd. Outside peak times the design may suit experienced adult cyclists but it won't accommodate the needs of students riding to the new school at Huntingfield or accessing the new sports centre.
For southbound cyclists along the Channel Hwy or bypass, the Algona Rd exit will be difficult to cross due to 2 lanes approaching from the bypass and one from the Channel Hwy by the Antartic Division. Cycling groups have been pushing for a grade separated crossing over or under Algona Rd to remove one of the main barriers for human-powered travel between Huntingfield and Kingston. This connection will be especially important when the new school is constructed in Huntingfield. The current plans show a shared pathway but users will have to cross the lanes over Algona Rd.

Summerleas Rd This will provide an important link over the top of the bypass but traffic volumes are expected to increase significantly between the roundabout at McDonalds and the bypass interchange at Whitewater Crescent. See DIER website for detail of summerleas Rd interchange(1.4MB PDF). Although the project will recontruct the existing shared path along the south side of Summerleas Rd, a new busy road crossing will be introduced. CyclingSouth has requested a pedestrian refuge at the crossing point opposite Whitewater Crescent to split the crossing into two stages.
Timeline
Mar 09. Representatives from CyclingSouth, Kingborough Council and K-BUG met with DIER to look at ways that access issues for pedestrians and cyclists in the Huntingfield area can be addressed. Emphasis was placed on a grade separated crossing of Algona Rd. In addition, it was considered prudent to review the Channel Hwy between Summerlease Rd and Algona Rd for improvements for cycling when the traffic shifts to the new bypass.
Jan 09. Kingborough Bicycle Users Group (K-BUG) prepared a submission on the issues with the bypass. To view comments see K-BUG submission.
Dec 08. CyclingSouth, KBUG and Kingborough Council met with DIER to review and discuss the plans for the by-pass. The consensus was that the proposed facilities for cyclists are inadequate for all but experienced riders. Inexperienced riders such as school students should not be expected to cross busy roads such as the slip road or Algona road. Instead there should be underpasses. Facilities at the new  Summerleas road/Whitewater crescent roundabout also appear unacceptable