Shoppers and business owners on Shepparton’s St Georges Rd have welcomed upgrades to the area which were opened on Tuesday ahead of schedule.
New features now include new lighting, trees, a median strip and on-street parking in the shopping precinct between Hayes and Swallow Sts.
St Georges Rd shop owners agreed the changes were beneficial for the safety of the area and had beautified the road.
National Supermarket owner Gholam Hashimi said he had witnessed U-turn collisions too many times before the changes.
‘‘Since the road has re-opened we are feeling very well and it is very good and safer than before,’’ Mr Hashimi said.
The improvements were made possible following Greater Shepparton City Council’s application for more than $200 000 from the Public Safety Infrastructure Fund which is part of the Victorian Government’s Community Crime Prevention Program.
The council also contributed about $110 000 toward the project. City of Greater Shepparton Mayor Kim O’Keeffe said she was pleased that another key project had been delivered for the community, with input from the St Georges Road Community Plan Group.
Cr O’Keeffe thanked local residents and St Georges Rd retailers for their co-operation during the redevelopment works.
The Massage Shop receptionist Lyn Dyball said the upgrade had improved the appearance of the road.
‘‘A lot of our customers have already picked up on it and come in and talked to us about it, so that’s a good thing,’’ she said.
Shepparton South Post Office owner Kamaldeep Singh said the improvements would make a difference to the safety in the area.
‘‘It’s more for the safety and protection where they have put the median strip to stop the U-turns and is good for both road users and pedestrians,’’ he said.
Alsham Restaurant owner Jafar Bakhsh said he was thankful for the improvements.
‘‘The road is safer for my kids and other kids and everything is so nice here ... it’s beautiful,’’ he said.
National Supermarket owner Gholam Hashimi said he was very happy with the upgrade.
‘‘Everyone happy, the road looks very beautiful with greenery and street lights,’’ he said.