Boongaree Nature Play Park presents issues of parking and pedestrian safety.

What is already a problem will only become worse as Council’s Boongaree Business Case forecasts a fourfold increase in visitations – from around 46K to 175K – by 2026

You’ll be aware that the safety issue is at its greatest on weekends, particularly on Saturdays when the Playing Field hosts kids’ sport, and in school holidays.

A group of residents has drafted a proposal to make the Berry town centre safer by introducing a 40 kph speed limit between the two roundabouts and including all parallel and cross streets

This, together with formal pedestrian crossings at the Boongaree Play Park and elsewhere, will help to address the risk to pedestrians, particularly children.

Such 40kph zones exist in areas of high pedestrian activity. Some Nowra CBD streets have 40 limits and that limit is also proposed as part of the Bowral Town Centre Plan.

Transport for NSW states: The 40km/h urban limit is part of a nationwide strategy to improve safety in high pedestrian activity areas. These areas include several CBD zones and small suburban shopping strips. 

The numbers say it all.
The distance along Queen Street between the 2 roundabouts is 1. 5 Km. At 50 kph it takes 1 minute 48 seconds; at 40 Kph it’s 2 minutes 15 seconds. Less than  a minute
Difference in stopping distance 10 metres.

For more on speed and safety Speeding | Transport for NSW

Shoalhaven Council recognises the need for formal pedestrian crossings and its discussion document for pedestrian access and mobility indicates 7 crossings. 3 would formalise those Queen Street installations which are a relic of the Princes Highway and which give traffic the right-of-way, rather than to pedestrians. The Council document also identifies the need for crossings on the approaches to the Boongaree Play Park and on the intersection of Queen and Alexandra Street.  If the Berry community supports the 40 kph speed limit proposal, these crossings would form an integral component of the submission.

It would make the town a safer and a more relaxing place for residents and visitors alike.

Support, to date, has come from the Berry Medical Centre, the Community Pre-School in Edward Street and Yolande Buchan, curator of the Fairy Garden at the North/Edward Streets junction. Parents of young children are canvassing support within their circles.
Of the churches; Uniting, St. Patrick’s and Scots Presbyterian are supportive.
31 business operators, who were approached in person, have also expressed support

Council has undertaken to evaluate this proposal subject to evidence of community support.

We’re seeking the support of all Berry residents. If you’re unable to attend the meeting,  please e-mail your support to berryforum@hotmail.com

Author: Philip Thorniley  philipthorniley@shoal.net.au