Warrnambool's controversial temporary bus interchange in Lava Street is back in the spotlight with the city council moving to find a permanent solution.
More than five years after it was temporarily moved from Koroit Street to Lava Street during the major upgrade to Liebig Street, the city's bus service still doesn't have a proper interchange - and the current site is plagued by safety concerns.
While council says the Lava Street location was still the most appropriate site, it also doesn't meet the safety needs of the community.
Warrnambool Bus Lines had warned the zebra crossing in front of where buses parked on Lava Street did not meet code.
There were reports of cars having to break suddenly to avoid hitting pedestrians stepping out in front of the bus onto the zebra crossing, and instances of pedestrians having to jump back to avoid being hit by cars.
If the council goes ahead with making the location the city's permanent interchange, the zebra crossing will need to be made safer.
But the council also warned there was a "high risk" of the project failing to meet the expected level of service if lighting, CCTV and toilets were not installed.
Councillors, at their monthly meeting on Monday, will be asked to vote on a recommendation to implement a community consultation plan for the site.
A survey carried out by the council in 2021 found 70 per cent of people felt safe at the bus interchange during the day but only 40 per cent felt safe at night.
A safety report found people were urinating in the alleyways because there were no toilets nearby.
Ninety per cent of people said installing CCTV would improve safety.
A move to the train station for the bus interchange has been ruled out for now because it does not provide space for six buses.
"However there remains an opportunity in the future to create a transport hub should land become available," the council says in the agenda for Monday's meeting.
The Department of Transport, Public Transport Victoria, the council and the bus company have been in discussions of how a permanent bus interchange should be funded.
Design work is likely to cost $40,000 and be funded by the council but it hasn't been revealed just how much it would cost for all the upgrades needed.
In its 2020 budget, the council had set aside $300,000 for an upgrade but three years later there has been no progress.
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