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McIntyres Lane overpass: same, but different

Geoff Helisma |

In last week’s story about the configuration of the soon to be constructed McIntyres Lane overpass, Bikes: yes; pedestrians: no¸ the Independent quoted a response from Clarence Valley Council (CVC) that said “pedestrian numbers of McIntyres Lane did not warrant the inclusion of a pedestrian walkway on the planned bridge and had not been requested”.

“The new bridge will have road shoulders suitable for cyclists,” CVC’s civil services manager Tim Jenkins said in an emailed statement.

However, after the newspaper went to press, Gulmarrad resident Dennis Gordon received a letter from Clarence MP Chris Gulaptis, who outlined a different interpretation of CVC’s decision.

Mr Gordon advocated the inclusion of a footpath in a written submission to the RMS in 2016.

“I am pleased to advise that Council accepted a proposal to widen the shoulders by 1.2 metres on each side of the new overpass to cater for both pedestrians and cyclists,” Mr Gulaptis wrote.

“This was considered a better solution in terms of overall safety, rather than putting a pedestrian/cyclist facility on one side of the new overpass, requiring them to then cross over the road approaches to use the footpath.”

When asked to clarify the apparent discrepancy, CVC said that its previous statement and Mr Gulaptis’s were “saying the same thing but in a different way”.

“The road shoulders suitable for cyclists is the same thing as the widening of the road shoulders by 1.2 m for cyclists and pedestrians,” CVC’s response stated.

“What we did not support was a dedicated pedestrian access on one side of the bridge.”

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