The Victorian Government is making controversial changes to ban an iconic attraction from the heart of Melbourne.
Horse-drawn carriages will be banned from the busy Melbourne CBD from next month.
Despite being a feature of the city for decades authorities now say the impact on traffic and safety have forced them to act.
From mid-June the carriages will be banned from entering an area bordered by Flinders Street, Spring Street, La Trobe Street and Spencer Street.
“We’re taking action to increase safety and traffic flow on Melbourne’s busiest streets as people increasingly return to our city’s roads and footpaths,” Transport Minister Ben Carroll said.
“The planned changes will make moving through the busy Hoddle Grid safer and easier for everyone – pedestrians, drivers, cyclists, delivery vans and trams.”
Last year, a horse pulling a carriage collapsed and died on Arden St in North Melbourne prompting backlash from animal rights groups.
In 2016, a horse was hit by a tram on Swanston Street with the animal’s head smashing through the driver’s window.
At the time police said the animal was dragged by the tram a short distance but only suffered minor injuries to its head, face and foot.
The incident prompted protests to end the practice as well as a petition signed by 16,000 people.
Originally published as ‘Difficult decision’: Horse-drawn carriages banned in Melbourne