Speed limit near facilities ‘inappropriate’

Ute on route . . . A utility vehicle travels on State Highway 87 in Outram yesterday. PHOTO: SHAWN MCAVINUE

An Outram woman wants safer roads in her community.

Sue Broad is concerned about the 100kmh speed limit on State Highway 87 from the Taieri River bridge towards Outram.

She felt it was an “inappropriate” speed given it was so close to recreation facilities such as Outram Glen, Taieri Historic Park and the reserve.

She told the Mosgiel-Taieri Community Board at its latest meeting that maintaining a 100kmh speed across the bridge was “not conducive with turning off to the glen”.

“If you want to invest in the glen you do not need people to be overshooting the glen and then trying to quickly do a U-turn to get back,” she said.

A better speed limit would be 80kmh since the area was well-used by local residents and visitors, she said.

“We have a right to say that’s not acceptable.”

The development of new subdivisions in Outram meant more people were moving in and they “don’t expect to have State Highway 87 right on the edge of town”.

The noise from the road was “atrocious” in the nearby Balmoral subdivision, especially when trucks used their engine brakes.

She was happy to lobby the NZ Transport Agency (NZTA) about the idea and believed the community board should get involved since it had dedicated funds to the glen.

Waka Kotahi NZTA safety engineers team leader Roy Johnston said a similar request was considered several years ago.

Motorists actually travelled about 80kmh on that stretch of road, so the NZTA decided there was no need to change the speed limit, Mr Johnston said.

Between the end of 2015 and last year, there was one minor injury crash and one non-injury crash on the section of highway, he said.

“Waka Kotahi is currently planning technical assessments for speed management across the country.

“We will assess the Outram request and consider whether it should be part of this programme.”

Staff would consider whether a “no-engine-braking sign” could be installed at the eastern approach to Outram.