Speed Humps for Delamere and Walhallow Streets, Hawker
Thank you, Madam Speaker.
Three years ago, I wrote to the then-Minister for Transport and City Services to share concerns that had been raised with me by residents who live in and near Hawker’s Delamere and Walhallow Streets. One of their main concerns was repeated occurrences of dangerous driving in these two streets. I informed the minister that reckless hooning had been occurring in the area for years and pointed out that these residents had repeatedly asked for traffic calming measures to be installed in order to help address the problem.
The next time that I wrote to the minister about these streets, I had spoken with residents who told me that they had personally witnessed drag racing taking place in front of their houses, with cars lining up three abreast to race each other – a very dangerous situation. Around this same time, a car that had been travelling well over the speed limit had swerved off the street and smashed into a resident’s fence, leaving skid marks in the driveway and pieces of its headlights embedded in the fence. I included with this letter photographs of the crash site and others showing an abundance of tyre marks in both Walhallow and Delamere Streets, many of them showing clear evidence of intentionally erratic skidding. Still, Madam Speaker, no action was taken by this government.
My next step was to write to the Minister for Police and Emergency Services. I shared with him everything mentioned above and asked what he could do to help make these streets safe for residents and other users again. In response, the minister stated that, and I quote, ‘law enforcement is the single most significant method of controlling the types of anti social behaviour reported’ that I had reported to him. He then promised that police would ‘conduct patrols in the area as operational priorities allow’. Again, Madam Speaker, nothing changed, and these problems have been allowed to continue until now.
Two weeks ago, I wrote to the current Minister for City Services to again raise the issue of dangerous driving on behalf of residents living in and near Delamere and Walhallow Streets. I let him know that I had received numerous reports since 2017 of speeding, hooning, burnouts and drag racing and that this was my fourth attempt since then to obtain assistance on behalf of these worried residents. I attached to this letter an image of the changeroom facility located near the intersection of these two streets. Madam Speaker, the side of this structure facing the street has been completely smashed through – a consequence of still more reckless driving, I was told. Residents rightly fear that at some point the property damage caused by drivers using their streets as recreational speedways may turn into serious personal injury.
I rise today to call upon the current ACT Government to finally respond appropriately to the concerns raised by these Hawker residents. Madam Speaker, they don’t feel safe in their streets, but they should. It is not fair that they don’t. Through me, they have asked for traffic calming measures and increased police patrols. To date, they have seen no evidence that this government cares for them at all. I ask for that to change.