Your say May 2018

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They’ll never walk alone
Not for the likes of us
Parking blues
On the diagonal
Dedicate lanes
A step too far?
Put it on the map
Plug the gap
Dry humour

They’ll never walk alone

Re kids not walking to school (RA March), one answer is that some parents are too lazy. My brother has been leading the walking school bus to his local primary school for over 12 years – his own two children are now at uni. Apart from the few sports identities he has prevailed upon to walk with the bus and encourage the kids, he has done the rest all himself. At least his generosity is appreciated by the young ones who look forward to walking with him.

Christine Norden, Soldiers Hill

Not for the likes of us

Re Changing Tracks (RA April), public transport in Melbourne is not an option for many of us. During off-peak times there is no parking and toilets are not open at many of the train stations. In peak times people are shoved together like sardines.

If there is a bus service the bus stops have no seating or shelter from the weather. Vandalism is not an excuse for not building a bus-stop shelter.

The planners building our new suburbs are still making the same mistakes and not allowing enough parking at new train stations and space for a decent-size bus-stop shelter on roadsides.

Margaret Abernethy, Diggers Rest

Parking blues

While we have a newish station at Williams Landing, at no time have we had multi-level car parking (RA April). If you’re not at the station by 6.45am you will not get a space and will have to pay for a spot in a dirt paddock or park illegally anywhere you can find a spot. There was never enough space designed for the number of commuters in this area and it hasn’t improved over the years.

Getting to the railway station by car is a nightmare. It can take 30 minutes or more to drive 3.2 kilometres and has taken me up to two hours at times to walk to a bus stop, wait for a bus to the station and then get into the city because of the off-peak bus service timetable.

Having a clean station doesn’t help if the trains don’t have a better service for commuters. This is a rapidly growing area and needs a better service for those who work in the city.

Raylee Ilott, Point Cook

EDITOR’S NOTE: We made a mistake. There is no multi-level car park at Williams Landing. Public Transport Victoria tells us the station’s car parking was upgraded in November, adding 154 spaces to bring the total to 604.

In the zone

Ruthven was voted second-worst railway station in the RACV’s On Track Survey. For years, commuters avoided that station like the plague as it was the first zone 2 station. Most people drove or walked to Reservoir to save $4 a day, so upgrade money was directed to Reservoir to improve parking. Now that you can travel via Ruthven for the same fare, people complain that there are no upgrades.

Terry Hibbert, Epping

On the diagonal

Re previous letters regarding slow pedestrians, why don’t all intersections have a completely separate cycle for pedestrians such as at the corner of Flinders and Elizabeth Streets?

This would allow pedestrians who want to cross both roads to do so diagonally instead of enduring two cycles. It would also make a driver’s task easier as turning traffic would have a clear run.

Perhaps the reduced costs to the community in terms of pedestrian deaths and injuries would be another benefit.

Leith Brown, Heatherton

Dedicate lanes 

Rex Jewell’s letter (RA March) made a strong case for encouraging cycling. Melbourne’s population is growing by 100,000 per year with an inevitable increase in congestion. The cycling infrastructure is patchy and, what there is, often woefully inadequate and compromised. The bike lanes in my neighbourhood are mostly parking lots. I frequently have to ride outside the bike lane as much of it is full of parked cars. I dare not ride close to the parked cars as too many drivers fling their doors open without looking.

Dedicated bike lanes, as in many European countries, are the answer.

David C. Peake, Beaumaris

A step too far?

I appreciated your article (RA March) detailing the traffic congestion near schools at pick-up and drop-off times, and how this may worsen in the future. This is a problem even in country towns. I liked the suggestions in the article, and also the idea that convenient drop-off spots some distance from schools could encourage students to walk as well as ease traffic congestion.

What of schools in the future? Will students (or small groups) be taught in homes remotely utilising technology, or is this a step too far?

Steve Finlay, Leongatha

Put it on the map

I was flipping through the March 18 edition of RA when the article on Hastings caught my eye. It spoke about its proximity to Melbourne, and the abundance of beaches and golf courses etc nearby.

But there was no visual representation of this information, nor of the local area relative to places we may know, such as Melbourne. I then looked at the article on kayaking, and again no map. 

What about including some maps in future editions? Perhaps even some pull-out maps we can keep for future travels?

Sue Pearson, Churchill

Plug the gap

The Greens say they want Australian sales of fossil fuel-powered cars to stop by 2030.

By then Melbourne will have a population of 5 million or more. Lets say a million of those buy an electric car and recharge its batteries at the railway station or shopping centre car park or at home.

Will we generate enough power by 2030 to run everything we have to run then? All the electrical items in the home, offices, factories and in business, lighting the roads, running trams and trains?

I have had summer blackouts lasting 45 minutes or an hour. I was told they happen when people arrive home from work and turn the air conditioners on. When it’s a few degrees hotter from global warming lots more people will buy and use air conditioners.

If a million cars are also plugged in at home after work at 7.30pm will the electrical supply system be able to cope? If not, what will happen? Twelve-hour blackouts or blackouts that last days?

George J King, Wheelers Hill

Lake Tyrell

Dry humour

We had a chuckle when we read your article on Lake Tyrrell (RA April). In March 2017 we were staying on the Murray River at Swan Reach and I nagged my poor husband to drive out to the lake for a photo shoot, having read about the wonderful photographs you could take there. We were  greeted by the most splendiferous sight ever... absolutely nothing! Except for a lonely viewing platform with no view, an enormous salt pan, and a few piles of salt in the far distance. The lake was just about bone dry. So if you’re thinking of going, check first to see if there’s water in the lake.

Judy O’Connor, Paynesville


post: RoyalAuto Letters, Level 9, 485 Bourke Street, Melbourne VIC 3000.

Letters cannot be considered for publication unless they are under 150 words and have the writer’s full name and postal address. This applies whether submitted by email or post. Only the name and suburb will be published. Letters may be edited for clarity and length.

Written by RACV
April 20, 2018