Could new Balmoral McDonald’s congest traffic?
A common complaint in the 877 submissions Auckland City Council received against the proposed Balmoral McDonald’s restaurant are about the implications of traffic coming to the restaurant.
Many local residents are concerned traffic flow in the area will be affected negatively by the additional vehicles McDonald’s will attract to the site on the corner of Balmoral Rd and Dominion Rd.
Central Auckland resident Guy Robinson said in his submission that there will be increased traffic flow and queues through the 24-hour fast food restaurant’s Drive Thru.
Traffic Planning Consultants director John Burgess prepared an assessment and statement of evidence for McDonald’s.
Based on results from the busiest McDonald’s branches such as Manukau, Mr Burgess predicts the average total number of vehicles to the Balmoral restaurant will be 1900 on the busiest day resulting in 3,800 vehicle movements.
Mr Burgess said that the busy traffic environment that exists on Balmoral Rd and Dominion Rd can accommodate additional traffic without detrimental effect on the operation and safety of the roads.
The Council’s planning report concludes that additional traffic will be significant enough to “result in a reduction in amenity values and a change in the character of the local residential environment”.
Mr Burgess said that Wiremu St will continue to operate safely and efficiently as a residential road if the McDonald’s restaurant is established.
He also said that the right turn from Wiremu St to Dominion Rd can be difficult but that he does not believe the proposed McDonald’s will have any significant effect on this movement.
The proposed 63 car parks McDonald’s would provide is ample according to Mr Burgess, and more than the 55 spaces the District Plan requires.
One existing on-street parking space will be removed after the Drive Thru entrance is built, and Mr Burgess points out that the Council would have the opportunity to create six new angled car parking spaces when the existing vehicle crossing is closed.
“In fact, I believe that parking demand on the site will be less than the parking provision that is proposed, and it may well be that other members of the public will choose to use the McDonald’s parking when visiting other establishments in the area,” said Mr Burgess.
Up to eight full days have been set aside this month for all submissions to be heard.