Gipps and Stanley Streets community

My previous project installment mentioned that next step of Streets Without Cars would be to consult the local community on who you are, and what you might want to see happen with the project. Here is the site plan again, showing the residents considered as part of this analysis, and how many agreed to take part in the survey:

20141007 gipps and stanley community #1
Survey respondents

The survey dealt with two areas of information, and this entry will deal with the first – demographics – which sought to learn about who this project is to cater for. Here is what was discovered:

Gender, age and ownership

20141007 gipps and stanley community #2

The division of genders and age was fairly even, as expected based on empirical observations. The divide between owners and renters was much more notable however, with an overwhelming majority of households surveyed being the owners of their own homes. This will be interesting when interpreting your thoughts on the future of this project, as it implies many of you will most likely live in the area for the foreseeable future, and therefore feel the impact of such a project more intensely.

Household types and private open space

20141007 gipps and stanley community #3

The typical terrace houses which dominate the area are generally quite large, thus it comes as no surprise that the average number of occupants for a household is nearly three, with families with children being a common household typology. Private spaces were also quite similar across the properties surveyed, with the usages of these spaces also being quite similar. The most surprising result here is the distinct lack of usable spaces adjacent to the street – all of the functional outdoor spaces were located at the rear of each property.

Household averages

20141007 gipps and stanley community #4

The average length of time each resident has lived in the area was higher than initially expected, but not surprising giving the high number of you who own your own home.

The daily commute

20141007 gipps and stanley community #5

As the area of focus is an inner Melbourne suburb, it comes as no surprise that residents can easily access all parts of Melbourne. The large variety in daily commute destinations suggests that you wholeheartedly take advantage of this centralised location.

Commute transport modes

20141007 gipps and stanley community #6

Despite the close proximity to Richmond railway station and relatively low average commute distance, very few of you indicated that you use public transport, instead opting to drive. This is quite surprising, and will be a key consideration in moving forwards with the planning of this project.

Occupations

20141007 gipps and stanley community #7

A fairly even distribution of professions was reported, but it didn’t seem to correlate to distance travelled in daily commutes, or to any opinion expressed in the second part of the survey.

To summarise, here are the findings based on this demographic component of the survey:

  • There is a fairly even divide of genders and ages throughout the area.
  • An overwhelming majority of you own your own home.
  • Functional outdoor spaces are a rarity at the front of houses, but very common at the rear of houses.
  • Further to this, most outdoor spaces are too small to accommodate anything beyond sedentary activities such as sitting and relaxing or dining. Many rear courtyards also function as car spaces, despite the street offering adequate parking the majority of the time. Residents with children indicated that even with rear courtyards, there wasn’t enough space for the children to play, and instead opted to play at the rear of their properties, where there is significantly less traffic than Stanley or Gipps Streets.
  • Driving is the preferred method of transport, despite living in close proximity to Richmond railway station and an average commute distance of only 7.35km.

Coming up next will be the results of what you thought of the street, and how you can see it being improved.


Image sources

1. Survey respondents, this and subsequent images copyright the author.
2. Gender, age and ownership
.
3. Households and private open space.
4. Miscellaneous averages.
5. Commute destinations.
6. Commute transport modes.
7. Occupationals.

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North and Clark Streets project brief

Following on from my previous post summarising interviews I conducted along North and Clark Streets, this post looks at your ideas and thoughts for the future potential of the street. I asked you about:

  • Your ideas for new uses of the streets.
  • How the facilities could help you and your business.
  • Times of the day, week and year that you would use them.
  • Your preference for communal or private space.
  • If you are prepared to assist in funding potential upgrades.

Here is what I was told:

20141007 north and clark brief #1

20141007 north and clark brief #2

20141007 north and clark brief #3

20141007 north and clark brief #4

Based on this input:

  • Over 60% of you would like to enhance recreational uses for the street by making it greener, with trees and park-like amenities. This could relate to the lack of private outdoor space within properties in commercial areas.
  • 45% of you want a better car parking system. You tend to be more interested in a better organised parking system that suits commercial uses rather than simply increasing the number of spaces.
  • Around 80% of you who think parking is an issue would be prepared to pay for a better designed parking system.
  • Almost all companies that have regular deliveries need better space for truck manoeuvring on the street.
  • 25% of you identify networking with local businesses in the area as a potential improvement for the future street design.
  • 33% of you see some sort of commercial potential in a newly designed street.
  • Your suggestions for usage times are mainly (70%) during business hours, although you also nominate some interesting other times of potential use, such as monthly gatherings or even biannual festival-like events.
  • 59% of you would be prepared to contribute financially to a successful scheme. All of you who said yes to this would accept an increase in rates. About 20% said of you would contribute capital funding if the project has some commercial benefit.
  • 50% of you would be happy to help maintain the future street if you are happy with it. That said, most of those (67%) who are happy to help would only do so if local council takes responsibility for tasks greater than cleaning up rubbish occasionally.

Image sources

  1. Desired street use, this and subsequent images copyright the author.
  2. Times of potential use.
  3. Communal vs private.
  4. Maintenance and payment.

North and Clark Streets community

I have conducted recent interviews with businesses on North and Clark Streets, Richmond, in order to better understand the context of my Streets Without Cars project. The interviews were split into two parts: one was about you, and your current experience of the street; the second was about what you want your future street to be.

The first half of the interview addressed:

  • Types of businesses and age of workers.
  • How you get to work, and company hours.
  • Size of business, if you rent and how long you have been there.
  • Company owned cars / bicycles.

Here is what I discovered:

20141003 north and clark community #1

20141003 north and clark community #2

20141003 north and clark community #3

Based on these findings, I came up with the following conclusions:

  • There is a wide range and even spread of different commercial enterprises on the street.
  • Majority of workers use cars to, from and during work.
  • Although very few businesses own their property, the average occupancy is lengthy: 8.2 years.
  • Street use during weekends is split evenly between daylight and night time hours.
  • Although a majority of businesses are open during the day, there is notable activity at night.
  • About 60% of businesses have company owned cars.

It was also important to get data on how the street is used in its current state. Given the commercial nature of the street, the answer was almost exclusively for parking, dispatch and deliveries.

I also investigated:

  • Volume of dispatch / deliveries per week.
  • If you require on street car parking.

20141003 north and clark community #4

Based on this, I came up with the following conclusions:

  • Over 50% of businesses use the street as their parking area.
  • There are many dispatches / deliveries per week, including 24 that involve a truck.

Image sources

  1. Business type, ownership, travel, this and subsequent images copyright of author.
  2. Operating hours.
  3. Other statistics.
  4. Street use.

Lulie Street traffic conclusions

The traffic survey undertaken for Lulie Street, Abbotsford, identified three significant patterns.

First, the majority of the traffic using Lulie Street passes through, compared with arriving at or departing the street. Only a small percentage of vehicle, bicycle and pedestrian journeys start or finish within the site area.

  • During peak periods, 94% of all traffic passes through the street. This equates to 546 of 582 vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians each hour.
  • During off-peak periods, 82% of all traffic passes through. This equates to 166 of 202 vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians each hour.

20141002 lulie traffic conclusions #1

Secondly, the predominant mode of transport using the street is the car.

  • During peak periods, 65% of all traffic, whether passing through, arriving at or departing the street are cars. This equates to 378 of 582 total users each hour.
  • During off-peak periods, 56% of all traffic, whether passing through, arriving at or departing the street are cars. This equates to 114 of 202 total users each hour.

20141002 lulie traffic conclusions #2

Thirdly, there is very little difference between the volumes of traffic travelling south towards Johnston Street and north towards the Eastern Freeway. Peak and off-peak times demonstrate relatively even percentages of traffic travelling in both directions.

  • During peak periods, 58% of all traffic travels south towards Johnston Street and 42% north towards the Eastern Freeway.
  • During off-peak periods, 46% of all traffic travels south towards Johnston Street and 54% north towards the Eastern Freeway.

20141002 lulie traffic conclusions #3

The following conclusions were established based on my observations:

  • There is a significantly lower volume of vehicles and bicycles arriving at or departing Lulie Street, as opposed to passing through. This indicates that Lulie Street is primarily used as a thoroughfare. Perhaps the street is used as an alternative route to avoid the traffic congestion on Hoddle Street.
  • Despite Lulie Street’s close proximity to Victoria Park train station, the street is dominated by vehicle use with cars being the most common form of transport along the street.
  • The volumes of traffic travelling towards Johnston Street and the Eastern Freeway are similar, supporting the notion that Lulie Street is often used as a rat run.
  • Vehicle, bicycle and pedestrian movement through the street is considerably higher during peak times than off-peak times. Based on my observations, around 8.00 – 9.30am would be considered morning peak and around 4.30 – 6.00pm evening peak. The majority of vehicles that arrive at the street park along it or in the $4 per day car park in the morning and then catch the train.

Image sources

  1. Traffic arriving, passing through and departing, this and subsequent images copyright the author.
  2. Volumes of bicycles, vehicles and pedestrians.
  3. Direction of traffic flow.

Lulie Street traffic analysis

The following data was collected during 6 x 1 hour observation sessions of Lulie Street, Abbotsford, conducted over a one week period in late August.

20141002 lulie street traffic #1

The traffic survey identified the number of vehicles, bicycles and pedestrians passing through, arriving at or departing the street. The direction in which people were traveling was recorded; towards the Eastern Freeway (north bound) or towards Johnston Street (south bound). More detailed information was also collected, including the average time spent in the street and the average speed at which people were passing through. The accompaniment of pets and prams was also noted.


Image source

  1. Traffic survey data, copyright the author.

Palmer Street traffic analysis

Traffic Analysis

I observed and counted all traffic passing through Palmer Street during the following periods:

  • Weekday morning peak
  • Weekday evening peak
  • Weekday daytime
  • Weekday night time
  • Weekend daytime
  • Weekend night time

Traffic counted includes:

  • Cars passing through the street (including direction and speed)
  • Bicycles
  • Pedestrians
  • Activities of cars and pedestrians e.g. parking, residential use

The peak period of use of the street is heavily influenced by the school day of Sacred Heart School, located on the corner of Palmer and Nicholson Streets. A large number of parents were observed picking up and dropping off their children. Many students also use the street on foot to walk to and from school.

20141001 palmer street traffic #1

Weekday morning peak
7.30am
Clear, 15km/h wind, 10 degrees

Cars: 87
Bicycles: 7
Pedestrians: 182
Pets and motorbikes: 0

20141001 palmer street traffic #2

Weekday daytime
9.30am
Sunny, 15km/h wind, 17 degrees

Cars: 40
Bicycles: 12
Pedestrians: 60
Pets and motorbikes: 4

20141001 palmer street traffic #3

Weekday afternoon peak
3pm
Sunny, 15km/h wind, 20 degrees

Cars: 80
Bicycles: 6
Pedestrians: 151
Pets and motorbikes: 0

20141001 palmer street traffic #4

Weekday night time
6pm
Light rain, 18km/h wind, 13 degrees

Cars: 38
Bicycles: 2
Pedestrians: 68
Pets and motorbikes: 0

20141001 palmer street traffic #5

Weekend daytime
10am
Sunny, 10km/h wind, 19 degrees

Cars: 20
Bicycles: 3
Pedestrians: 55
Pets and motorbikes: 0

20141001 palmer street traffic #6

Weekend night time
6pm
Clear, 13km/h wind, 14 degrees

Cars: 38
Bicycles: 2
Pedestrians: 68
Pets and motorbikes: 0

A summary of this information is as follows:

Overall

Print

Speed and frequency

20141001 palmer street traffic #8

  • Cars travel at an average speed of 20 km/h.
  • Cars spend on average 13.5 seconds in the street as many of them enter at Nicholson Street and turn off immediately after the school down Royal Lane.
  • Low bicycle use.
  • The dominant use of the street is by pedestrians (large number and more frequently).

20141001 palmer street traffic #9

  • Pedestrians move more quickly during peak periods than off-peak periods.
  • Bicycle speed remain constant across both periods.
  • Car spend more time on the street during peak periods, due to parents finding parking spots to wait for their children.
  • Cars use the street more frequently during peak periods than off-peak periods.

Street usage

20141001 palmer street traffic #10

20141001 palmer street traffic #11

  • The majority of traffic uses the section of the street between Nicholson Street and Royal Lane. This is likely due to the street being used as a shortcut to avoid the Nicholson Street / Victoria Parade intersection to the south.
  • Only 0.01% of traffic originates from Little Fleet Street, considered therefore as a dead end street.

Image sources

  1. Weekday morning peak, this and subsequent images copyright of author.
  2. Weekday daytime.
  3. Weekday afternoon peak.
  4. Weekday night time.
  5. Weekend daytime.
  6. Weekend night time.
  7. Traffic summary.
  8. Speed and frequency.
  9. Peak vs. off-peak.
  10. Pedestrian routes.
  11. Car routes.

Richmond carpark traffic conclusions

The surveys of car, bicycle and pedestrian traffic through the carpark located at 36 Thomas Street, Richmond, revealed some interesting conclusions about the site. The diagram below represents the total data collected across all six observation periods When overlaid, patterns of movement and usage begin to emerge.

20140930 richmond carpark traffic conclusions #1

Comparing the diagrams of traffic usage across the day, we can see that the timeframe with the highest use is the peak evening period. Weekday and weekend daytimes also have higher than average usage. However, total numbers of cars using the carpark across the day would be classified as generally low.

20140930 richmond carpark traffic conclusions #2

Parking

  • Overall, the site has a very low usage as a carpark, with an average of only 14 our 74 car parks in use per hour. The peak period for parking is during the day on weekends, particularly on Saturdays. The lowest usage generally occurs on weeknights.
  • Of the cars that do use the site for parking, an overwhelming majority of 84% use the south end of the carpark closest to shops on Bridge Road, compared to only 16% which used the north side.
  • Observations revealed that customers going to the adjacent Thomas Dux supermarket tend to park as close to the south west corner as possible and most do not pay for parking as they only use the carpark for a short period of time.

Pedestrians

The path of movement which most pedestrians take is from the pedestrian lane (leading to Bridge Road) cutting through the carpark on a diagonal and exiting at the corner of Thomas and Hull Streets.

Durations

The average duration of time spent in the carpark by pedestrians is 43 seconds, compared with 10 seconds for cars.

These conclusions will be used together with the community consultation outcomes to begin to create a masterplan for the site.


Image sources

  1. Total traffic overlay, this and following image copyright of author.
  2. Traffic use by period.

Richmond carpark traffic analysis

In order to gauge the current usage of the Richmond carpark located at 36 Thomas Street, a series of observation sessions were conducted across a variety of timeframes. The sessions each lasted 1 hour and were undertaken over a two week period in September. The numbers of cars, pedestrians, bicycles, pets and prams were counted during each session. More detailed information was also collected, including the locations of parking, and both the directions and durations of movement. The data has been collated below.

20140930 richmond carpark traffic #1

20140930 richmond carpark traffic #2

20140930 richmond carpark traffic #3

20140930 richmond carpark traffic #4

20140930 richmond carpark traffic #5

20140930 richmond carpark traffic #6


Image sources

  1. Weekday morning peak, this and subsequent images copyright of author.
  2. Weekend evening peak.
  3. Weekday daytime.
  4. Weekday night time.
  5. Weekend day time.
  6. Weekend night time.

Alexander Street traffic analysis

A traffic study on Alexander Street was conducted in order to determine the volume and nature of traffic in the street. The study was designed to look at three modes of travel: car, bicycle and walking. I took note of how fast they were going, how long they spent in the street, which direction they came from and whether they were arriving, departing or passing through. I conducted these observations across 6 periods of study: morning peak, midday, evening peak, night time, weekend morning and weekend evening.

Alexander Street is subject to very low traffic conditions throughout the day, with the morning peak period experiencing the highest volume of traffic and night time the lowest.

The diagram below depicts the observed volumes of traffic for each hour period, making note of whether they were arriving, departing or passing through, and the direction in which they travelled.

20140930 alexander street traffic #1

The following diagram shows the average amount of time each mode of transport spent in Alexander Street and the speed at which they travelled. There was very little observed difference in this data across the 6 observation periods.

20140930 alexander street traffic #2

Traffic conclusions

Given the low volume of through traffic recorded, it is clear that Alexander Street is used primarily by its residents. The through traffic that does exist is due to northbound traffic from Gold Street that uses Alexander Street to avoid the intersection with Alexandra Parade. Cars who intend to head west on Alexandra Parade will use the Alexandra Parade slip lane at the end of Alexander Street in order to avoid the traffic lights on Gold Street. Gold Street can get quite busy, hence it makes sense to rat run through Alexander Street. Note that the adjacent Ballarat Street has been closed off to prevent this from occurring (see diagram below).

20140930 alexander street traffic #3

One option to reduce traffic to Alexander Street further would be to block access to the Alexandra Parade slip lane as has been done to Ballarat Street. Alternatively, I could introduce a shared traffic space heading north to make it less enticing as a thoroughfare. This approach could easily be extended to Forest and Bendigo Streets to the west, to prevent adverse traffic conditions in those streets.


Image sources

  1. Street traffic data, this and subsequent images copyright of author.
  2. Average time spent.
  3. Rat run diagram.

Little Charles Street traffic conclusions

According to traffic analysis data, Little Charles Street is a quiet street with a higher number of pedestrians than cars and bicycles. The street is narrow and offers only one way traffic, creating a low speed environment with an average car speed of 30km / hour. Some local residents complained that cars drive too fast in this narrow laneway.

20140929 little charles traffic conclusions #1

20140929 little charles traffic conclusions #2


Image sources

  1. Traffic frequencies, this and following image copyright of author.
  2. Traffic volumes.