Geelong considers banning trucks from city centre

Study results into truck movements in Geelong will soon be released and could decide whether a truck ban takes place

By Ruza Zivkusic-Aftasi | July 10, 2013

Results from a study into truck movements in Geelong, Victoria, will soon be released and could decide whether a truck ban in the city centre will take place.

VicRoads and the Victorian Department of Transport Planning and Local Infrastructure have been leading the Geelong Central Transport Links study together with key stakeholders to collect truck movement data that would decide whether a trial encouraging freight vehicles to use alternative routes is necessary.

VicRoads Regional Director William Tieppo says current findings show major east-west truck freight movements run through the city centre.

"This was undertaken through number plates surveys, truck following surveys and tube counts," Tieppo says.

"The analysis of this data is currently being undertaken and a trial of encouraging freight vehicles to use alternative routes to the south of the central activity area is currently being considered with the City of Greater Geelong."

Geelong Chamber of Commerce Executive Officer Bernadette Uzelac is hoping the ban will come in place, saying trucks impact local businesses and deter people from shopping in the city.

"There have been major instances of near-misses between trucks and pedestrians, so safety is a major concern," Uzelac says.

"The traffic congestion in the city is already high during peak times and trucks using these inner city roads as a short cut to the eastern side of Geelong and Bellarine Peninsula just add to that congestion."

Uzelac says truck traffic has been an issue for more than 10 years and keeps getting worse.

Liberal MP and former truck driver David Koch wants the transport industry to be involved before a decision is made.

"I don’t think it’s just about trucks in and trucks out without discussing it with the transport industry," Koch says.

"I think it’s important that all are involved, The final decision will be left with the transport management team between Geelong and VicRoads but I cannot personally see why large trucks should be travelling down the main street of Geelong if they’re not making deliveries or attending to business within the CBD."

The study commenced last October and is expected to be completed within the coming months.

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