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New signals to benefit visually impaired


New signals to benefit visually impaired.

A City Council proposal to install new traffic lights at a St Albans intersection has come about in response to the needs of visually impaired people in our community.

If the proposal goes ahead, new lights will be installed at the intersection of Springfield Road, Abberley Crescent and Edgeware Road (currently the intersection has stop signs on Abberley Crescent and Edgeware Road). Many visually impaired people live in this area mainly because of its proximity to the Royal NZ Foundation for the Blind in Bristol Street, St Albans.

Visually impaired people feel at risk when crossing busy Springfield Road, as they navigate their way to and from the shopping precinct on the corner of Edgeware Road and Colombo Street. The Council has worked with the Blind Foundation to improve the situation.

The proposed signals will have tactile paving on the approaches and audio tactile pedestrian buttons to indicate to pedestrians when to and when not to cross. These facilities are now becoming standard at new signalised intersections.

Council Cycling and Pedestrian Planner, Michael Thomson, says that the signals will be a real safety improvement for vulnerable road users.

“Traffic signals provide the opportunity to incorporate audio and tactile equipment to assist visually impaired persons. Signals will also assist children going to and from school,” says Thomson.

The Council is asking for feedback on the proposal before 31 October. Brian Boddy can be contacted on 941-8013 for further information.

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