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Camera will register pedestrians at lights

A new camera installed at the Peel Street Bridge traffic lights is not out to catch out motorists, but to help pedestrians.

“It's new smart technology used to improve traffic flows. The camera is located on top of the lights and monitors traffic build up,” said Dave Hadfield, Gisborne District Council Journeys infrastructure manager.

“The old system would work on a timer system regardless if there were cars waiting at the lights or not. The new camera reviews traffic build up and adjusts the lights accordingly.

“The exception is if a pedestrian wishes to cross the road and pushes the button, the technology then endeavours to override the overall system to give pedestrians preference.”

The technology costs $20,000 a set and GDC has purchased two sets.

The lights at the Peel Street-Palmerston Road intersection have been the centre of attention over the last month, after a truck knocked the lights out of action for two weeks last month.

During that time a temporary roundabout was installed, to much acclaim from motorists who reported traffic flow was much improved.

A Gisborne Herald webpoll asking if a permanent roundabout would be a better option for traffic control found 80 percent of respondents thought it would be a better solution.

Speaking to the Gisborne Herald previously, Mr Hadfield agreed traffic flows had improved when the roundabout was in place but said a report would have to be provided to the council for discussion, if a roundabout was to be considered as a permanent option.

“This intersection is programmed for a full pavement replacement when important sewer repairs are completed. If a roundabout is a preferred option, additional asphalt layers can be constructed to accommodate the new road layout.”

Costs to repair the lights were estimated to be between $8000 and $10,000.

EYE IN THE SKY: A new camera installed at the Peel Street Bridge traffic lights is not out to catch out motorists, it's actually there to help pedestrians. Picture by Paul Rickard