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No calm in traffic calming

Web posted on August 03, 2005

The Fountain Pen has always declared itself to be a proud resident of Ward 1. Thus, when the issue of traffic calming around St. George's Park began to cause a furor, we were on the spot.

It was obvious at the June 20 council meeting that various councillors did not agree with a proposal to erect six traffic calming barriers within a half kilometer distance on Grange. In fact, sufficient questions were raised about the efficacy of the plan that further review was requested.

A public information meeting was held at King George School on July 14. If opinions expressed at that meeting are any indication, most of the larger neighbourhood (now extending from the railway tracks to Eramosa and the river to Stevenson) is opposed to the plan.

We at The Fountain Pen find ourselves agreeing with those who disagree. First of all, we're selfish. Who wants overflow traffic from Grange invading our quiet side streets? These are neighbourhood streets. Grange is officially a "local collector" street which, according to city traffic services, can carry 1500 to 4500 cars per day.

Secondly, we're selfish. We like being able to drive along Grange (without impediment) to access our quiet streets. After all, we've been doing it for years.

We say that city planners should have explored traffic flow more carefully before approving the huge new subdivisions to the east. Where, realistically, are these residents expected to drive? York Road is already overburdened with long lineups at traffic lights at Victoria and Stevenson. Driving along Elizabeth is a slow trip and the bottleneck to make a turn onto Macdonell at the Allan Bridge will just get worse. The third option, Eramosa Road, is just too far away for residents living along Grange.

There may be too much cut-through traffic on Grange, but our opinion is that most St. George's Park residents do not want traffic calming. Maybe those living on Grange who are looking to decrease traffic should have consulted us earlier. We would have appreciated it, since some of the traffic leaving Grange will be using our neighbourhood streets.