Mixed emotions over Roodebloem traffic situation

The traffic situation in Roodebloem Road has been a concern for locals.

Lined with trendy new businesses, bustling Roodebloem Road in Woodstock is fast becoming a popular place to see and be seen, but the buzz comes with a price: traffic congestion.

Speeding cars, illegal parking, rat running, double-parking delivery trucks and gridlock are all proving to be a huge headache for some residents.

Woodstock resident Henry Moore is happy to see business taking off in the area, but he’s far from happy about the growing traffic nightmare.

“This road cannot accommodate much traffic and where there are large volumes of it, they start spilling over into the streets, not to mention when there are obstructions, such as trucks or illegally parked vehicles,” he said.

Mr Moore said drivers were “taking chances” in the growing congestion; he fears it’s only a matter of time before there’s a tragedy.

“When traffic offences occur, you need to be resident in order to know that it’s a real concern. If you are not from the area and you see a car speeding down this road, you shrug it off, but if you constantly see it happening, you find a real concern in it,” Mr Moore said. “Before something happens, I’d suggest the City takes a good look at the problems in this road.”

Another Woodstock resident, Rowena Adams, believes she could have easily ended up as a statistic recently. She was travelling down the road on her way home from work, when a delivery truck decided to stop suddenly.

“I could have easily crashed into the back of that truck. I could have had a car come smashing into the back of me. I got out of the car and nearly wanted to throttle this driver, who politely got out of the truck, went about what he was doing and replied: ‘Sorry mam, I’m only doing my job’”, she said.

“If it was his job to drive like a maniac, then somebody should be giving him a promotion, because he was doing his job really well.”

Ms Adams feels more visible policing is needed during peak-hour traffic and lunchtime.

“Maybe even businesses should be held accountable, because, after all, these delivery trucks are coming to them.”

However, JP Smith, mayoral committee member for safety and security, said Roodebloem Road businesses could not be held liable for something happening on a public road. He said the City’s traffic services had not received any complaints from the community about the road.

Cara Morris from the Upper Woodstock Residents’ Association (UWRA) said she also hadn’t had any complaints about traffic in Roodebloem Road. On the contrary, she said the association had noticed an improvement in the traffic since the introduction of a four-way stop on the corners of Roodebloem and Salisbury roads.

However, she added: “There are still motorists who speed along the road, and with the multitude of daily road users, congestion does occur, especially during rush hour times.”

Ms Morris said the UWRA was mindful of the fact that businesses needed to receive deliveries. “So perhaps it’s an issue of awareness of the businesses on the road. Roodebloem Road is the widest road near these businesses. If businesses were to use side roads for these deliveries, then the issue would affect residents far more. Perhaps an approach would be to request that businesses have designated drop-off areas and times for receiving. This may help to mitigate the issues.

“The Woodstock community is made up of residents as well as businesses, and Roodebloem Road is a hub of activity with motorists, delivery trucks and MyCiTi buses all using the road throughout the day. Should you have particular concerns regarding road usage, please get in touch with the UWRA, and we will endeavour to work together with all road users to come to a happy solution for all.”

Mr Smith said residents with concerns could call 021 596 1999 to help direct the City’s enforcement efforts.