A new roundabout to improve traffic flow is currently under construction at the intersection of Ladies Mile and Spaanschemat River Roads in Constantia. The improved intersection is being implemented following the approval of the new shopping mall to be built on a portion of the Old Ladies Mile dump site.
The R250-million development was approved in 2016, and is reportedly to be anchored by a Checkers supermarket. It will also encompass 427 parking bays.
Residents in the Constantia area are said to have rejected talks of the development and expressed outrage when it was approved. Fifty-four objections were submitted to the City of Cape Town, saying it would harm the suburb’s character, compromise traffic safety and history.
The Solomon family, who farmed the land from 1902, occupied the farm for 65 years before they were removed under the Group Areas Act. They reportedly developed the land into a self-sustaining, commercially productive land unit – growing flowers, vegetables and fruit for export – and raised livestock and poultry.
To date, traffic at this intersection was regulated through a set of traffic signals. The new roundabout will make commuting through this point much easier. Roundabouts also serve as a useful traffic calming measure as there is no green light to chase or a red light to skip, thus, it also improves the overall safety at the intersection.
“The theme for this year’s Transport Month is about showcasing transport infrastructure. Transport infrastructure includes everything that is needed to enable people and goods to move from point A to B, be it by road or rail, in a car, a bus, or on a bicycle or on foot,” the City’s Mayco Member for Transport, Felicity Purchase said in a statement. “Cape Town’s road network is one of our greatest assets and we are always looking at improvements that will contribute to easing congestion and improving safety and traffic flow. The less time spent on the road, the more time commuters have to do other more important things.”
“I believe this road upgrade is worthy of being showcased. I have been receiving positive messages from motorists using this stretch of the road about the difference that this roundabout is already making in their driving lives. The comments are encouraging,” she added.
The benefits of the roundabout are:
– Less congestion on approaching roads as traffic moves through more quickly;
– Continuous flow of traffic along Ladies Mile Road between the two roundabouts at Huxley Road and Firgrove Way;
– Calming traffic as there is no green light to chase or red light to beat;
– A reduction of speed at the intersection and along this corridor; and
– Improvement of the overall safety at the intersection as drivers must slow down and yield to enter the roundabout.
The Transport Directorate is currently also considering a proposal for a roundabout at the intersection of Ladies Mile, Huxley, and the M3 Roads to improve traffic flow at this point.