New traffic lights at the intersection of Tram Road and Merlin Street in Doncaster will soon alleviate congestion in Doncaster Hill, improving safety for motorists and pedestrians.
Manningham Council successfully advocated for the project, which will be funded by Council and delivered by the Victorian Department of Transport and Planning in early 2024.
The signalised intersection includes traffic and pedestrian signals and turning lanes in and out of Merlin Street to assist with traffic flow through the southern Doncaster Hill area. This much-needed infrastructure project will support local traffic to enter and exit the residential area onto the four-lane arterial road.
The need for the project was first identified as a critical infrastructure project during Council’s development of the Doncaster Hill Strategy in 2002 (updated in 2004), which anticipated a significant population increase in the area due to high-density residential housing developments.
An independent panel provided input into the projects to be delivered as part of the strategy, which included the signalisation of the Tram-Merlin intersection. Further consultations in 2004 and 2016 continued to show support for the project as a key infrastructure item for Doncaster Hill.
In 2005, the project was included in the Doncaster Hill Development Contributions Plan, which means developers have contributed to the cost of the project. Since then, residents have expressed concerns about a build-up of traffic at intersections and frustration at the difficulty of crossing this road to access nearby commercial buildings and public transport.
As part of the project, some on-street parking will be removed from Merlin Street to allow for dedicated turning lanes in and out of Tram Road. Additional parking will be installed further down the street to minimise this loss. Two on street car parks on Tram Road Service Road will also be removed to allow for a pedestrian crossing from the traffic lights. Council has contacted impacted residents directly to communicate this change.
Manningham Mayor, Councillor Deirdre Diamante, said planning for the future was an important role for Council.
“When it comes to planning, our responsibilities extend to future generations. Our predecessors thought about apartment living, the large number of people who would be moving to Doncaster Hill and the traffic solutions which would ensure they could move around efficiently”.
This project is a testament to the long-term planning and vision of the Doncaster Hill Strategy.
Find out more about the Tram Road and Merlin Street intersection upgrade.