Smith Street is a shopping street in Collingwood (LAPM 12) and Gold (LAPM 10). It’s a great street that can be even better. Smith Street can be better for business by becoming the core of a 20-minute neighbourhood where local residents regularly visit, shop and linger.

Image credit: Streets Alive Yarra, Apple Maps.

Existing conditions

Smith Street suffers from a lack of trees, space for footpath dining, level access tram stops or separated bicycle lanes.

Smith Street looking south. Image credit: Google Maps.

Previous assessments

As part of the planned re-write of the Yarra Planning Scheme, the City of Yarra published a background paper on access and movement in 2015.

Source: City of Yarra

Yarra’s Encouraging and Increasing Walking Strategy 2005 identified that:

Recommendations for Smith Street. Image credit: Encouraging and Increasing Walking Strategy 2005.

Opportunities

Smith Street can attract more patronage becoming the core of a 20-minute neighbourhood:

Solutions

Smith Street can be revitalised by widening the footpaths, installing separated bicycle lanes and building level-access tram stops. On-street parking for shoppers is increased by relocating it to the first 5-10 spots on each side street, with the first spot reserved for deliveries.

Example cross-section. Image credit: Streetmix and Streets Alive Yarra.
Example layout for a tram-based shopping street. Image credit: Streets Alive Yarra.

The key is to understand that on-street parking isn’t the answer – if Smith Street is attractive then people will find a way to get there.

Image credit: Revitalize, or Die

Example

An example of how Smith Street can look like can be seen from these photos of the recently improved tram stop on Carlisle Street St Kilda. Note the wider footpaths, and the separated bicycle lane continuing over the Disability Discrimination Act (DDA) compliant level access tram stop. A best-practice bicycle lane would be wider, e.g. 2.3 m:

Image credit: Herschel Landes

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