The circulation system within campus consists of a U-shaped east-west access road from which areas of staff and student parking are accessed. External access is provided via the main entrance drive to Sippy Downs Drive, the main thoroughfare to the campus, with a secondary access established to the east of this.
A further road access is proposed to provide a third link directly to Sippy Downs Drive, to integrate with the future Sippy Downs Town Centre, and to provide direct access to campus car parking.
High quality internal paths provide east-west link ways, and an expansive open campus green runs north to south, in conjunction with the tree lined and colonnaded building frontages on the same orientation.
Within the campus, and during peak teaching periods, there is a high degree of vehicle circulation as drivers seek to park as close as possible to their destinations.
Externally, the four surrounding primary and secondary schools contribute to a high degree of congestion on Sippy Downs Drive during the AM peak. During the inter-peak congestion also occurs as the University population seeks to enter and exit via the main entrance. A single lane roundabout at the main entrance, and another further west on Sippy Downs Drive at University Way, are key bottlenecks in the road network.
The strategy has been to reduce pressure on the main entrance by developing further links onto Sippy Downs Drive, in conjunction with the SCRC upgrade of this road, thereby distributing the peak traffic loading more evenly over two further road accesses.
Council will also upgrade the roundabout at the University main entrance to a signalised intersection. These works are committed and should be complete before 2013.
Council's analysis of the traffic volumes forecast for Sippy Downs Drive, accounting for the future Sippy Downs Town Centre in 2021, indicates daily volumes in the order of 20,000 vehicles per day, or well within the capacity of a four lane signalised road.
It can be assumed that peak congestion levels will alleviate after the upgrade of the road. Notwithstanding, with the further expansion of built form identified to the east within the Campus, there will be a requirement for further augmentation of vehicle and pedestrian circulation paths. The proposed parking option on the east side of campus would require access from Claymore Road.
The Sippy Downs Town Centre will also necessitate a strong walking and cycling link to the north.
As the built form approaches the lake areas to the south of the Campus, an opportunity exists for a key new east-west link for walking and cycling, integrated with the proposed boardwalk and gathering place on the shore of the lakes. This would positively provide for movement between USC, Chancellor Park and Chancellor State College.
For further internal efficiency, the importance of a future east-west cross route is recognised, to link the two southern terminations of the access road, and to reduce parking related circulation, in conjunction with appropriate variable message signage (VMS).
It is essential that such a link does not diminish the amenity afforded by the existing 'green spine' and that external traffic is not introduced to the campus. To this end, the link is likely to be located below-grade and would be coupled with traffic calming measures and other control systems on its approaches, discussed below.
The 2012 Campus Master Plan proposes further vehicle linkages within the site to service the expanded building footprints and to relieve pressure on the east west access road. Key features of the strategy include a total of five road links into the Campus from Sippy Downs Drive, including the main access opposite Stringybark Road, with a least four of these signalized. Direct access to structured car parking from Sippy Downs Drive without the use of the east west access road will be established, as well as a signalised access directly off Claymore Road, via the Sport Centre, and then directly to structured parking.
An eventual below-grade vehicular access will link the southern terminations of the main access road, effectively allowing USC traffic to circulate between the eastern and western access roads and to be able to access car parking areas from either road. The southern extension of the main access road will connect new built form for servicing and allow limited parking adjacent these buildings.
Bus access to and from the south of the Campus will be via the GreenLink Corridor. A section of road between the car park north of the sports fields and the road connection to Sippy Downs Drive west of the school is intended for emergency vehicles only. This link will resemble a driveway rather than a vehicular thoroughfare, in order that it does not become used as a general ‘shortcut’.
Of central importance is the travel dynamic that the Sippy Downs Town Centre will introduce. The development is likely to draw traffic from the south, and it is important that the internal circulation for USC encourages this traffic to skirt the Campus via Sippy Downs Drive rather than access the Campus itself. As noted, the development could easily generate in excess of 15,000 vehicle trips a day with a mix of residential and commercial space.
The 2012 Campus Master Plan also proposes reinforced walking and cycling links, both east-west to service the desire line between Chancellor Park State College, and neighbouring suburbs, and north-south from the suburbs to the south, through the campus to the town centre and vice versa.
The entrance sequence into the campus will include direct access to structured car parking from Sippy Downs Drive without the use of the east west access road; a signalised access directly off Claymore Road, via the Sport Centre, and then directly to structured parking; a below-grade vehicular access linking the southern terminations of the main access road, effectively allowing USC traffic to circulate between the eastern and western access roads and to be able to access car parking areas from either road; a southern extension of the main access road to connect new built form for servicing and to allow limited parking adjacent these buildings and bus access to and from the south of the campus via the GreenLink corridor.