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Wollongong City Council

Focussing on improving access to the city’s foreshore areas

Friday 9 June 2023

Whether you want to hit the beach at Stanwell Park, launch your boat at Bellambi or take a dip in Port Kembla’s much-loved pool with a view, our city’s foreshore areas are popular year-round.

While we know our beaches and parklands can be the place to be on a hot summer’s day, this popularity can pose challenges when it comes to parking, and moving about safely for pedestrians and cyclists.

Right now, we’re asking for community feedback on two important and interlinked pieces of work related to our foreshore areas and opportunities to improve these spaces.

The first, Improving pedestrian and cycling safety in the Wollongong foreshore area, looks at 10 specific locations across Stuart Park, Cliff Road and Lang Park where we’re proposing changes that improve safety when it comes to walking and cycling connections in this area.

The second project, Summer Foreshore Parking Management, looks at how we might address the demands on parking in popular beach spots including Stanwell Park, Wombarra, Austinmer, Bellambi, Wollongong and Port Kembla.

“These are two significant projects for the city, and it makes sense we’re seeking community feedback on these interlinked pieces of work at the same time,’’ Wollongong City Acting Lord Mayor Councillor Tania Brown said.

“There are many opinions in our community about how we can better manage access to our foreshore areas across the city and support access for both locals and visitors to our beaches and foreshore parklands.

“Now is the time to have a look at Council’s plans and to see what we’re proposing to do to address matters of safety and easy access for pedestrians and cyclists around North Wollongong and City Beach, as well as access to some of our most popular, and at times congested, foreshore areas, in Stanwell Park, Austinmer and Port Kembla.’’

The proposed changes outlined in the Improving pedestrian and cycling safety in the Wollongong foreshore area focus on key infrastructure to enhance walking and cycling connections and crossing points.

The proposed works are also part of Council’s commitment to build on the changes made to the foreshore precinct’s roads for cyclists’ safety ahead of the UCI Road World Championships last year. While some of the other infrastructure changes for the event have been reinstated across the city, Council made the commitment to consult with our community on ways we might improve usability of the foreshore area as a legacy of the international championship.

“Last year we made changes to the foreshore area to allow the world’s top cyclists the chance to compete safely and on roads that met international race standards. We made a commitment to our community at the time that we would look at opportunities to build on the legacy of this event,’’ Wollongong City Council General Manager Greg Doyle said.

“This is that opportunity. We are proposing a range of long-term changes that include potential raised priority pedestrian crossings on Bourke Street, George Hanley Drive, Cliff Road near Osborne Park, Endeavour Drive, Marine Drive and Crown Street next to Parkside Avenue.

“The Blue Mile is popular for pedestrians and cyclists, and the community has asked us to review alternatives to reduce cyclist speeds within this precinct. We are looking at how we can improve on-road safety for cyclists including dedicated climbing lanes, which would be painted green, on Cliff Road. These lanes will encourage confident cyclists to move from the Blue Mile and provide separation from vehicles on the uphill sections of Cliff Road.’’

“Other proposals include raised shared pedestrian and cycle crossings at Cliff Road near Stuart Park, at the Belmore Basin carpark intersection, at Cliff Road adjacent to the Marine Drive roundabout and at Marine Drive next to Lang Park.’’

Under the Summer Foreshore Parking there are several temporary measures proposed for next summer that are targeting parking congestion in popular beach areas. The proposed changes include timed 4-four parking at Austinmer Beach, at Wollongong’s Flagstaff Hill and in the pool car park at Port Kembla Beach, timed 2-hour parking at Bald Hill and at Bellambi Beach and variable messaging signs at Stanwell Park, Wombarra, and Austinmer highlighting the number of free car spaces in the car parks

“We know our beaches can get very busy in summer, but we also know that there are some particular locations that can be more congested than others,’’ Cr Brown said.

“The purpose of this foreshore parking management is to look at ways we might address parking demand at these locations, while also allowing people to go to the beach and foreshore parks, to relax and enjoy a swim.

“I encourage everyone to take a look at the detailed plans on Council’s website for both engagements and provide their feedback. It’s important we have as many views as possible from our community captured as part of this consultation so that we’re able to consider everyone’s thoughts and opinions before any decisions are made on the next steps for these locations.’

Read: Improving pedestrian and cycling safety in the Wollongong foreshore area

Read: Summer Foreshore Parking Management

The consultation closes on 10 July 2023.

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