As a Brit visiting Australia for the first time, I have no right of say but the article that appeared as headlines in the 4 February edition of the Byron Shire Echo prompted me to observe that car culture is certainly alive and well in Byron Bay.
Cars are necessary as distances are far in Australia but there is no reason why they should dominate urban environments.
Despite its prominence as a tourist destination the car rules supreme. Pity the pedestrians who are obliged to negotiate the railings at the junction of Lawson and Johnson Streets. Surely there must be a better arrangement.
Why not divert the traffic away from Johnson Street by constructing a new crossing over the redundant rail tracks between Butler Street and Marvel Street. Johnson Street could then be given pedestrian priority, as too others with heavy footfall such as Lawson Street and Bay Lane. (See plan below for details).
Alternatively these streets could be designated as ‘shared space’ whereby vehicle drivers and pedestrians are given equal priority within an environment designed specifically for this purpose.
I suggest that councillors and the consultants, McGregor Coxall, study what has, and is, happening in Europe.
There are many examples of successful shared space within cities, perhaps the most relevant to Byron Bay being Poynton in UK. Check it out by going to https://www.youtube.com/watch?v=-vzDDMzq7d0&feature=player_embedded
David Irwin. London