Ducking dodgems on Duke and Brecon but hang on, says QLDC

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Days are numbered for drivers sneaking through Queenstown’s Brecon and Duke Streets the wrong way.

The two streets bordering the Sofitel complex are legally off-limits to traffic from the Shotover St roundabout.

Despite no-entry signs put up a few years ago, pedestrians, cyclists and motorists travelling the right way down Duke St into Brecon St are being forced to take evasive action from wrong-way traffic meeting them head-on.

Brecon St’s Tim Ceci of Vertigo Bikes says he sometimes sees six cars an hour come off Shotover onto the no-entry Brecon – some of them driving all the way up Duke St.

Ceci says when drivers come up the wrong way, they yell at him and cyclists on his bike tours for getting in their way.

“It’ll either be a cyclist or pedestrian that gets hurt – it’s just waiting for an accident,” he warns.

Ceci says he’s contacted Queenstown Lakes District Council several times since last summer – he wants a narrowing of Brecon off Shotover and bigger, brighter signs.

But QLDC wants to wait awhile – roading boss Ian Marshall says a new traffic island and better signage will be installed in the next couple of months.

“In order to make it difficult to make the left turn [from Shotover onto Brecon] you can put an extra bit of traffic island so it narrows the road,” says Marshall, “and [you’ll be able to] come out of [Brecon St correctly but] not into it the wrong way.

“Traffic is not recognising it’s a one-way street.”

Meantime, local police constable Sean Drader says if drivers enter Brecon or Duke Sts the wrong way in front of a cop they’ll be slapped with a $150 fine.