Median strip trial needed for future planning: mayor
At last week’s Business After Five meeting, Matamata- Piako district mayor Jan Barnes defended the median strip trial.
Speaking to the Matamata Chronicle after the event, Barnes wanted to stress that it was a trial, not a permanent fixture.
She encouraged Matamata residents to give the council’s trial a go.
‘‘ It will be four years before the Waikato Expressway affects this area and the pressure on traffic is going to get worse in the meantime.’’
She also revealed the reasons why the trial was devised.
The first reason was keep traffic moving.
‘‘ If a car stops in the middle, nothing moves.’’
She also said Matamata had a ‘‘safety problem with tourists’’.
The council was going ‘‘big and bold’’ by conducting the trial with Christmas coming up, she said.
This was because the council wanted to run the trial at the busiest time of year to see how the roads coped.
She acknowledged the trial made people think more about their trip, but she encouraged residents to try routes through town, ‘‘especially when coming out of New World’’.
‘‘ Think about using Rawhiti Rd and coming out by the clock tower.’’
Barnes acknowledged the trial was blocking up Firth St, but said that Firth St
to had already been blocking up before the trial.
She said the train coming through town caused problems before the trial too. She encouraged residents to keep an open mind and use different routes.
‘‘If you live on Peria Rd then use the clock tower route more,’’ she said.
Matamata-Piako mayor Jan Barnes