Cobden Streetscape 2020

Cobden Streetscape tile

Thank you to those people who have contributed their ideas on ways to improve Cobden’s main streetscape, and to the 60 people who completed and returned the survey to show which project proposals have more or less community support.

What we heard

Council is proposing to allocate $300,000 in its Draft Budget for priority works on Curdie Street early next year. The next step is for our engineers to prepare a draft project plan responding to the priorities identified through the community survey, and to invite feedback on it before it is presented to Council for its consideration and approval.

General Observations

 Sixty people, or 4.7 per cent, of Cobden’s population 15 years and older (ABS Census 2016) completed and returned the survey. It represents an indication of the views of those interested, however it is not to be taken as an effective poll of the views of the township population as a whole.

The existence of the survey and opportunities to participate (online, by phone or hardcopy) were well known in Cobden, including through a letterbox drop to all households carried out by the Cobden Scouts. Whereas some may be disappointed by the limited response, some respondents make clear their view that Cobden’s Streetscape is fine as it is and should not be ‘messed up’.

On the whole survey responses were generally supportive of project elements (54%), compared to ‘not supportive’ or ‘strongly opposed’ (45%), but it was a finely balanced thing. Whereas many people contributed considered ideas to improve the streetscape, there was an element of respondents who were opposed to most change proposals. There were differences here across completed hard-copy and online survey forms, hinting at possible demographic differences between these samples.

A note needs to be made about proposals involving responses to truck traffic in the town centre. One respondent noted that as many as a third of the project ideas involved thoughts on how traffic issues should be better managed. There was a particular focus on oversized vehicles. Whereas some argue that trucks should be diverted from the town centre there is a contrary view that trucks are an essential part of Cobden’s identity and prosperity.

Summary of survey responses (N=60)

Project idea

Support

Neutral

Oppose

Net

1*

5#

31. Tourist signage

42

9

7

35

22

4

30. Tandarook Park

42

7

8

34

29

5

3. Disabled Car parks

38

13

6

32

13

3

26. Toilet cleaning

33

19

5

28

11

-

18. Plantings

33

11

12

21

14

5

14. Directional signs

33

13

12

21

10

2

16. Street numbers

29

13

12

17

10

8

4. Seating

30

12

15

15

14

6

17. Long vehicle parking

31

9

16

15

15

11

22. More footpaths

25

17

12

13

10

2

5. Slippery surfaces

29

10

17

12

11

5

7. Gopher parking

27

14

15

12

7

6

1. Footpath condition

27

12

18

9

12

7

8. Additional car parks

22

16

17

5

8

7

19. Art

25

11

20

5

13

13

28. Hinged banner poles

23

14

19

4

10

10

9. Fairy lights

24

12

20

4

11

12

23. Alternative route

24

10

22

2

13

18

20. Street furniture

23

10

24

-1

12

13

2. Outstand Design

19

17

20

-1

7

7

11. Widen car-parks

22

9

24

-2

9

14

13. Four-way clock

18

11

27

-9

6

17

12. Widen footpaths

18

9

28

-10

7

10

27. Digital notice-board

19

6

29

-10

10

13

15. Bicycle lane markings

13

19

23

-10

2

10

29. Street sound system

17

12

28

-11

4

19

24. Roundabout design

17

11

28

-11

7

14

21. More parking spaces

14

10

33

-19

3

16

6. New street trees

9

14

30

-21

3

10

10. Remove trees

12

7

35

-23

5

17

25. Remove median strip

14

6

37

-23

10

22

SUM TOTALS

752

363

619

33

319

294

 

Summary of findings

Based on the survey, there are 13 project elements which are supported on balance, and 10 which are not. Opinion is closely divided on a further 8 projects elements, so the survey does not support their inclusion in the project plan. As noted previously, some elements are also ‘out of scope’ for one or more reasons.

On the positive side, there is strong support to improve tourist signage. There is overwhelming support to invest in Tandarook Park, and to make better use of this public space. Reviewing the location and number of disabled parks is also a widely supported priority, as is increased frequency of toilet cleaning (out of scope).

Support for better street numbering outnumbered opposition two to one. Proposed street plantings and improved directional signage were also generally favoured. Provision of more/ better seating, long vehicle parking and more footpaths attracted a similar level of support. Remedying slippery surfaces, providing an area or areas for gopher parking and improving the general condition of the footpath areas of the town cent rounded out the list of supported project elements.

Four ideas were strongly opposed through the survey. These were removal of the median strip, removal of trees, planting new street trees and removing kerbing and outstands to provide more parking. Six other proposals attracted significantly more opposition than support, namely redesigning the roundabouts, street sound system, bicycle lane markings, digital noticeboard, widening footpaths to enable outdoor dining and the four-way clock idea.

 

Project timeline Cobden.jpg

  1. Anita Chivell
    Hi when you are crossing the road on foot near Thommos you have to watch your step as tree trunks make it hard to see traffic, or traffic to see you. Harder still with young kids/prams. Also, so I've been told, hard to see around trees at NAB corner in full leaf in spring when you are driving a truck as tree branches are at head height blocking view.
  2. M N PAULL
    I’d like to see Existing footpaths in better condition And MORE footpaths so I can walk to the shops without having to use someone’s lawn or the side of the road.