Derek Fordyce, Tygerhof
The article on traffic challenges near Shoprite due to delivery vehicle congestion refers (“Blind spot,” Tabletalk December 6).
I am not sure I agree with the editorial which suggests that the bollards were a council mistake. That would mean condoning pavement parking, I guess.
There is no doubt though that deliveries to Shoprite have made De Grendel Road at least an awkward (and unsafe) road to use for many years.
When Shoprite started expanding internally some years ago, I hoped they might plan a new, safer delivery area. To this end, I enquired inside the store.
They directed me to head office, who said they would take it into account. This was not fundamentally addressed, although the age-old dispatch area was tidied up quite nicely, but remained inadequate for the constant truck traffic, which had obviously increased due to the larger store.
Either before or around the time that Shoprite expanded internally, council tarred the pavement section under discussion, not as parking, but with pedestrians in mind, and it included ramped access for wheelchairs at the kerb corner.
However, from the start, trucks delivering at Shoprite (and residents’ cars) would park there. This made it difficult for pedestrians to access and defeated the object of the costly exercise.
Eventually, as most would have seen, the heavy truck tyres had a pothole effect on the gravel section adjoining the path and inevitably on the tarring itself, which brings us to council once again tarring the path a few months ago.
As I guessed the same situation would repeat itself, I contacted council who directed me to the roads department. I explained the situation, asked them if the purpose was indeed a path for pedestrian use, which they confirmed. Thereafter they installed bollards.
Though they do deter trucks, the bollards are spaced wide enough that cars can fit between them, again makingitunusable without difficulty for any pedestrian, young, elderly or wheelchair bound to use it.
I use De Grendel quite often so was able to see cars straddling the path, between the bollards, both at night and during the day, so I sent the City some pictures. They undertook to place more bollards between the current ones.
It’s encouraging to read that traffic services and Shoprite are considering options.
Perhaps this will lead to a satisfactory solution which ensures access and safety for all concerned.