Recently, Cross River Rail released plans for the upgrade to Dutton Park Station. We’re disappointed that the design doesn’t seem to take into account the surrounding environment and where people using the station are headed. It also completely misses the opportunity to improve active travel movements through this area – in particular between Annerley and the University of Queensland, new State Secondary College, and towards South Brisbane and the CBD.
We will be following this up with the Cross River Rail delivery team, but our immediate concerns are:
The new station entry on Noble St will deposit passengers onto a dangerous uncontrolled left-turn slip-lane (Annerley Rd into Noble St). From the kerb ramp there it’s impossible to even see vehicles racing around the corner, as the view is obscured by the railway protection fencing.
The intersection of Annerley Rd, Noble St, Cornwall St and Railway Pde is a mess of beg-button crossings, and long waits on tiny exposed concrete islands or narrow footpaths. We find it incredible that the plans for the new station entrance seem to have been developed in isolation as if that’s all just fine.
From our observations, most passengers arriving at Dutton Park Station in the morning walk from there along Cornwall St towards the medical precinct. The new plan appears to have these people using the station overpass, but then having to either cross the slip lane and Annerley Rd, or go down to the eastern platform, and walk north along the platform under Annerley Rd, then exit the station and walk back up the hill again to get to Cornwall St. Thus the station changes would seem to make the trip from the train station to the hospital significantly longer and less attractive than it is now.
Removing the current station entrance onto the Annerley Rd bridge will reduce the chance of conflicts with people trying to squeeze along that narrow footpath, and we expect that much of the current bike traffic will eventually divert to the bridge across the rail lines further north (connecting the PA Hospital Bikeway to Peter Doherty St). Nevertheless, there is still a lot of cycling and walking traffic along Annerley Rd, as mentioned above. Performing major construction work in this area but neglecting to improve conditions for active travel on Annerley Rd is shameful.
Where do we even start with the active-travel horror-show that is the intersection of Annerley Rd and Cornwall St (plus Kent St) east of the rail line? Watch interactions there for a few minutes and you find yourself holding your breath.
We have asked that this matter be included on the agenda for the Active Transport Advisory Committee (ATAC) as addressing it will require collaboration between Brisbane City Council and multiple Queensland Government agencies: Cross River Rail, Queensland Rail, TransLink, Transport and Main Roads. But really, why is it left to volunteer advocates to point this stuff out, rather than the job of professional planners to take a more wholistic approach?