ORANGE councillor Sam Romano has resurrected calls to close one block of Anson Street to solve traffic problems in the area.
Cr Romano called for council staff to reinvestigate past proposals to close the “messy” street, and also look at making Lords Place, between Kite and Summer Streets, into a mall.
He said the taxi rank in front of Woolworths should be moved to Kite Street.
“It wouldn’t be an inconvenience for people to walk that far,” he said.
“I’ve always said that the taxi rank was in the wrong place.
“There’s too much congestion in one spot.”
Earlier this week Cr Glenn Taylor suggested flashing lights at the troubled Anson Street pedestrian crossing could solve ongoing safety concerns.
But Cr Romano said more needed to be done.
“Even with flashing lights I can see dramas,” he said.
“People don’t take any notice.”
Operations manager John Boyd told Thursday’s council meeting plans to make an Anson Street mall had been part of a staged upgrade that was abandoned because of security concerns.
“It was suggested having traffic going down there at night improved the safety,” he said.
But Cr Romano said he didn’t think security was a problem.
“It’s no different to anywhere in the city, it’s not like it’s out the back of Woop Woop,” he said.
“It’s in the centre of town and it’s a big open wide area.”
He said closing Anson Street could be used as a benchmark for other malls, making the central business district more appealing for shoppers, with areas for alfresco dining.
“It’s well and truly overdue to make some sections of Orange into malls,” he said.
“All the restaurants are there [Lords Place]... and there’s always problems with parking.”
Cr Romano said council staff would have to ensure all businesses in the area had back entrances for delivery trucks before plans for an Anson Street mall go ahead.