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Melbourne’s new plan to drive cars OUT of the city

SALLY CAPP in studio with Neil Mitchell

Melbourne council wants cars out of the city and has unveiled a radical plan to achieve it.

Road and on-street parking would be reallocated to pedestrians, cyclists, motorcyclists and green space under the City of Melbourne’s new Transport Strategy 2030 report.

The strategy aims to cut the number of cars coming into the city by 50,000 per day.

Even roads approaching the CBD will be targeted, with plans to slow traffic to 40km/h in all streets within the council’s municipality, except for major roads which fall under VicRoads jurisdiction.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp says slowing traffic speeds is the council’s priority.

“That’s the first thing we’re going to be looking at,” she told 3AW’s Neil Mitchell.

Under the plan, roads in Parkville, Carlton, Carlton North, Flemington, Kensington, West Mebourne, Port Melbounre, Docklands, Southbank, South Yarra, East Melbourne and the CBD would have all road speeds reduced to 40km/h.

In another measure, every street in the ‘Hoddle Grid’, except King Street, will be reduced to only one lane each way.

Protected bike lanes will also be built on Exhibition St, Rathdowne St and the ­Latrobe St bridge.

Lord Mayor Sally Capp says the council is working to cater to the extra 500,000 people expected to pass through the CBD each day by 2036.

Currently, half of cars travelling into the CBD are passing through, and Ms Capp said stopping these “rat runs” is key to easing congestion.

But a congestion charge is off the table, for now.

“The fact is we don’t have the powers to do that,” she said.

“We’re putting that up as a suggestion to the state government as something to talk about, and they have already told us they are not interested in talking about that with us in the short term.”

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SALLY CAPP in studio with Neil Mitchell
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