IT'S a problem already and it's only getting worse.
That's how bus service owner/operator Scott Martin describes the roundabout at the Trinity Heights shops, where he says turning lanes are urgently needed to stop the traffic chokes.
Bathurst Regional Council, meanwhile, says it is aware of the problem and the intersection has been identified as the "highest priority for upgrade".
Mr Martin, who owns and operates the school bus service for the Bridle Track and Turondale with Clint Mutton, spoke with the Western Advocate after contacting Reynolds Buses, Sinclair Bus Services and Buslines - all of which, he said, share his concerns.
Mr Martin said the congestion at the roundabout in the morning and afternoon had been a problem for at least 12 months, if not longer.
"It [the banked-up traffic] goes back down along Gilmour Street towards the highway, it goes along Gilmour Street right down to Laffing Waters Lane, it goes up Marsden Lane to past the school entrance and right down to the St Pat's football club of an afternoon trying to get on to Gilmour Street," he said.
"Of an afternoon it's worse because you've got not only school traffic, but people finishing work, so it can be any time from 2.45pm to 5pm.
"I go Church Lane [in the school bus] a lot of the time because I know I can look over and you can see the cars piled up past the Pat's club and I can go straight through, hit Gilmour Street and I've only got 100 metres or so of traffic before I hit the roundabout rather than half a kilometre."
Mr Martin said the answer was simple: turning lanes, which he said had transformed the Oberon turn-off on the Great Western Highway.
"Since they've put that roundabout in [at the Oberon turn-off], it's amazing now; the traffic just flows," he said.
"You hardly see them banked up and if they are, they're not banked up for very long at all. They might be only a couple of cars deep.
"The traffic flows because you can go straight or you can turn in all directions."
He said the Trinity Heights intersection, in his view, could accommodate turning lanes without power poles having to be moved.
Mr Martin said he was not anti-development, but said the roads needed to be able to cope with the new housing subdivisions at Kelso.
"And they [council] need to start upgrading now. Or put pressure on the powers that be for that to happen," he said.
"Because they've got a lot of massive development planned for that side of town.
"And I'm fine with it [the development], but you've got to have the infrastructure in place.
"You can't do it all, let the roads get all congested, and then say, oh gee, we've got a problem here now."
When contacted about the roundabout and its congestion, Bathurst Regional Council director of engineering services Darren Sturgiss said the traffic at the intersection was "recognised".
"Following a joint Roads and Maritime Services and council traffic assessment of major roads in Bathurst, this intersection has been identified as highest priority for upgrade," he said.
He said funding for the detailed design for an upgrade of the intersection would be considered by council in the 2020/21 Annual Operating Plan.