Proposed Yacaaba Street Extension

Update 24 June 2014: Council Adopted This Proposal titled “No pedestrian Link” for the Yaacaba Extension at a Council Meeting on 29 June 2014.

Margaret Sec TRRA says:

How do You Cross Victoria Parade from the proposed Yacaaba Street extension?

The option approved by Councillors on 24.6.14 was not one put out for public exhibition or comment.  Whilst the business community and TRRA are pleased to see the “Reserved for Future Building” (Commercial zone) (see map attached) taken out and turned into public open space (for now), there has been no provision made for pedestrians to cross Victoria Parade in this plan. 

Yes, it’s close to a roundabout but there’s no accounting for people’s behaviour when it comes to crossing roads.  Council is dreaming if they think people are going to walk up to the traffic lights to cross the road when they are heading directly for the foreshore and the children’s play area.  More thought needs to go into planning this.

Examiner 01 July : Green Space Win For Nelson Bay’s Yacaaba Street

We would agree that “All parties walked out happy with the progress on the street extension after the Port Stephens Council meeting on June 24.” for the present. Ms Carmel Foster has retreated in the face of major opposition to a commercial building on the site and calmed the natives by saying that there is “no immediate plan to build on the site as the market was not ripe for commercial space.” How long will it be before we are revisiting this argument?  We will be “watching this space” in the future with great interest.

Update 24 April: TRRA Inc members attended the Business Chamber Breakfast  today and heard their concerns with the Councils latest proposals for the Yacaaba Extension and on closer examination of the drawings and material on exhibition we have written to Councillors expressing our view. Letter below.

Revised TRRA Inc. Submission: HERE    Nelson Bay & District Business Association Petition: HERE

More Site Images: HERE

To: East ward Councillors John, Sally, John

You have probably already been alerted to this issue by other interested parties.

TRRA is concerned that the current proposal would ‘lock in’ an unacceptable constraint on the view corridor and fail to deliver the visually attractive link between town centre and foreshore that we all agreed, through the Nelson Bay Strategy, as essential objectives for the future of the town.

I attach the submission that we will be formally sending to Council before the end of the Exhibition period (oddly, a (next) Sunday)

While there remain different views in the community about the traffic elements of the design and the extent to which any commercial development is acceptable, there is a clear consensus amongst all those individuals and groups we have talked to that all of the options put to Council in February, including the preferred Concept 5, reserve an unacceptable area of the site for potential commercial development.

We strongly urge you to ensure the current proposals are not adopted and instead provide for a further period of public consultation on a link that meets the objectives of the Nelson Bay Strategy.

Nigel Waters

planning@trra.com.au

Update 14 April: Plan on exhibition Now: HERE

Latest News – Proposed Yacaaba Street Extension – 14 December 2013 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

 

The Nelson Bay and District Business Association held a breakfast meeting on 12 December at which this proposal was discussed following a presentation by Bruce Petersen, the Council Planning Officer responsible for the project.  The meeting was attended by some sixteen people including four TRRA members.

Bruce summarized the objectives for the extension and advised of the options which were under consideration including:

  • A two-way road with footpath
  • A one-way road in a northerly direction with footpath
  • A  one-way road in a southerly direction with footpath
  • A shared access including a slow one way traffic calmed roadway, pedestrian and cycle access

Retail use ( two-storey, extending 8 metres from the eastern boundary ) is being considered for each of the above options.

The business community expressed a range of views. The main points raised were:

  • The importance of preserving and increasing parking spaces in the CBD, including the need to redevelop the Donald Street East car-park.
  • There was a view that traffic congestion was a serious problem at peak times and that the Yacaaba Street extension should be seen as a means of relieving this. Those of this view advocated a two way thoroughfare and if a one lane option was adopted, that there be flexibility to go to two lanes in the future.
  • There is need for much clearer signage to direct traffic through the CBD and to the available car parks
  • Some were concerned by the prospect of additional retail space competing with an already difficult retail viability. Others felt that the market forces would resolve this.
  • Concern was raised in relation to the impact on the CBD of the impending closure of Coles and a possible 2 year construction time for the Woolworths replacement. Without the attraction of a supermarket for such a long period, retail customers may by-pass Nelson Bay to Salamander  Centre.

TRRA  took the opportunity to draw attention to the objectives for the extension stated in the Nelson Bay Town  and Foreshore Strategy:

  • The need to provide a view corridor from the town towards the water and vice versa.
  •  The need to encourage a free interchange (especially of pedestrians) between the foreshore and the town centre
  •  The conclusion of the GHD Consultants  Traffic Study that the Yacaaba extension is “not seen ascritical to the road network in Nelson Bay”.
  •  The possible negative impact if the extension developed into a through route bringing non local traffic along Yacaaba Street. The  Traffic Study nominated Dowling Street as the preferred interim through route, with the Fingal By-Pass as the long term solution.

Bruce Petersen reported that PSC  Planning and engineering staff are tending to favour the option of a one way road access in a northerly direction (limited to 10 KPH) together with a shared  pedestrian and cycle access and retail development to two-storeys on the Eastern boundary.  Councillors had a site inspection earlier in the week and also were tending to see this as the preferred option.  It has been acknowledged that increased pedestrian traffic will require consideration of a strategy to facilitate safe crossing of Victoria Parade to the foreshore.

Council has in the last two days installed a temporary bitumen footpath linking through to the roundabout on Victoria Parade.  Since the demolition of the house fronting Victoria Parade, a steady flow of pedestrians across the cleared site has demonstrated the  potential of this route to enhance the linkage from the CBD to the foreshore. Congratulations to Council for recognizing the opportunity to trial a  new linkage route especially over the forthcoming holiday period.

A report to Council on the whole project is now intended for the 3rd week in February 2014.  Any  further comments from stakeholders will need to be received by late January.

No details were provided on sources of  funding  except that development of any retail component may be at least two years away.

Geoff Washington – TRRA committee (Tourism)

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8 Responses to Proposed Yacaaba Street Extension

  1. Greg Hodson says:

    Well I am now very concerned about this very proposal and after looking at the plans and some of the information going around this is now looking like anther debacle. I personally would now like to suggest that this area through to Victoria Parade be constructed into a pedestrian mall and alfresco dining for the locals and the visitors with no traffic what so ever. This area this would also create a great pedestrian walkway through to the marina. I can only see major ramifications to traffic problems here at the two intersections one being the roundabout on Victoria Parade and the other being the intersection at Yaccaba St and Magnus St should this current proposal go ahead.

  2. Dick says:

    A comment that was made at the Business Breakfast discussion (I think by Dave Monin) that has stuck in my mind was: “If we need more commercial buildings in NB CBD in the future we can replace some of the old ones and/or go up. If we need more public open space in the future where will we get that from? let’s not build out the little bit that’s left!”

    This is is powerful argument, we know Council has spent a substantial amount on acquiring this land and would like to recoup some of the expense but what will future generations think about that? I think they would forgive us if we retained that open space.

  3. Bill Joncevski says:

    Steve, you are right. Also, it appears from this Concept 5 that the proposed one way lane and the footpath will be approximately half of the current Magnus Street. Can they explain how we can have room for one way traffic lane, pedestrians, bicycles, outdoor tables, bollards etc.
    The question is do we want an infrastructure development that will serve the town for all times or a large commercial development that will add to the existing barrier between the CBD and the waterfront. We know that the Council cannot build a commercial building in a near term, however, having placed this concept for public exhibition and endorsement the public has the right to respond.

  4. Steve Ward says:

    The council mucked up when it sold the land to connect the top of Yacaaba St near the bowling club. Councillors – PLEASE do not repeat the mistake again!
    Same old chestnuts about levels and drainage are being trotted out again to justify this decision.
    The engineering problems are INSIGNIFICANT compared to those solved by road builder daily!
    When has a town planning authority ever been congratulated by future generations for creating a narrow – one way street or reducing future park land?

    Equally as important as the traffic issue is for tourist to have easy – visual connection between the town and the water front.

  5. Arthur Phillips says:

    What are they thinking??, a narrow access between buildings for one way traffic, just have a real look at the proposed building and note, the thoroughfare will be the same width as the driveway alongside the Cinema Mall and the photo on the proposal (south view ) is very misleading maybe deliberately, because the building on the left hand side (west ) still owns about 4 meters which could, and will be built on one day doesn’t leave much room does it ? Looks like the powers to be spent their time in a little village Europe.

  6. Bill Stedman says:

    Very informative. A two story retail development is a concern to me because of the height impact on neighbouring property. One thing that is missing is “Where do we send submissions/concerns”?

    • Margaret, Secretary TRRA says:

      Bill – The sketch plans for the favoured proposal were presented to the Nelson Bay Business Association last Thursday (30th Jan). The Councillors need to approve the recommended option and it will then be placed on public exhibition. There will be plenty of time to comment. Only roadworks/pedestrian links will be done “when funding is available” and the commercial buildings proposed will come later, based on demand.

  7. Terry Wall says:

    Great presentation; informative and relevant.
    Thanks.

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