Two shades of Grey

By Ashleigh Fielding | posted on February 7, 2019

A CITY of Albany committee has been recommended to endorse concept plans which would see a one-way section of Grey Street East in Albany’s CBD be converted to two-way.

The plans released on Monday suggest the section of Grey Street East between the Premier Hotel and the Aberdeen Street roundabout be changed to allow traffic to enter York Street from the east and west.

The construction work was scheduled and budgeted for the City of Albany’s 2018/2019 financial year as a solution to relieve traffic congestion at “alternate west-east routes such as Peels Place”.

“Travelling west to east through the CBD from Grey Street is simple and the busy York Street can be avoided by use of the current one-way system through Grey Street East to Aberdeen Street,” the planning document reads.

“For the same traveller return journey, the one way system results in a limited number of return options which inevitably results in increased congestion at west-east route such as Peels Place.

“Ultimately, by reinstating the two-way traffic flow, west-east permeability is improved and with it a reduction in congestion.”

The origin of the one-way section of Grey Street is believed to be linked to the design of the Premier Hotel.

As revealed in The Weekender, the hotel is set to undergo a major facelift to include a new alfresco area facing Grey Street.

“Although information is vague, it is understood that the one-way system currently on Grey Street East was implemented to facilitate the extended alfresco area previously occupied by the Premier Hotel,” the planning document states.

“Works need to be carried out in conjunction with the Premier Hotel development to facilitate the new verandah and alfresco dining.

“The allocation in the budget for the Grey Street East works was done in order to meet the timeframes for the much needed building development.”

A site meeting was held on September 4 last year and three members of the public attended.

The main concern raised was the reduction of parking bays, which is expected to be 14.

The City has said it is working with the Premier Hotel developer to secure a lease over the rear portion of the property for parking use.

“This would have the provision of an additional 40 bays once finalised,” the document states.

“The proposed term of this lease is 20 years but subject to negotiation with the developer.”

The Development and Infrastructure Services Committee will meet on February 13 to make its decision ahead of a full council meeting.