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We estimate that three in ten local Canberra streets has no footpaths, and that Canberra’s network of on-road cycle lanes, off-road shared community paths and footpaths reaches only half of Canberra homes.
If the nature strip is obstructed, if the grass is too wet to walk on, or if the wheels of a baby stroller won’t roll over the grass, you may walk along the street facing oncoming traffic that does not have to give way to you. Vertical kerbs make it difficult to move a baby stroller out of the way of an approaching vehicle. After 40 years, the ACT Government agreed to put a footpath along the Campbell street shown above. According to the 2012 ACT Budget, the ACT Government will cease funding footpath construction and maintenance from 2013.
You can make your nature strip a beautiful place for your neighbours to walk, by complying with the following ACT Government requirements:
- A strip of grass or stable surface a minimum of 1.2 metres wide must be maintained at the back of kerb for pedestrian access. No obstruction is permitted within this 1.2 metre wide strip. Any edging must be flush with the adjacent ground.
- Foliage which is on the nature strip, or growing on your lease and overhangs a footpath, must be pruned to maintain a minimum height of 2 metres clear above footpaths and pruned back in line with the edge of the footpath (including hedges and groundcovers). For safety purposes, pedestrians must have access to the entire width of the footpath.
- Foliage or structures are not to cause a line of sight problem for vehicles or pedestrians when using, entering or exiting an intersection, driveway or footpath.
- Where a lease is adjacent to a pedestrian laneway which meets a road, extra provision for line of sight must be considered.
- Grass should be kept below 0.5 of a metre, to ensure that it does not cause a line of sight problem or a fire hazard.
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