The Halifax Regional Municipality hopes to reduce collisions at some key left-turning intersections in the city, but at least one business group fears a lack of communication from the municipality could lead to the failure of another pilot project.
Sue Uteck, executive director of the Spring Garden Area Business Association, says the speed bumps, which will be installed at six intersections, could confuse drivers. While she’s ready to see if they’ll work, she worries about the pilot’s repeated failure.
“As an association, we can live with the changes,” Uteck told Global News on Saturday. “But it’s a lack of communication from the city all the way. The bus pilot project failed due to lack of communication and here we are again faced with another implementation with no communication at all. »
The speed bumps will be temporary and will enter intersections, prompting left-turning drivers to drive around them and slow down.
“Large intersections can provide drivers with the ability to make a wide left turn, which can be made…at higher operating speeds,” HRM says on its website. “(But this) can lead to dangerous conditions for pedestrians sharing the intersection.
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“The goal of left-turn traffic calming is to reduce the turning radius of vehicles by tightening the path a vehicle must navigate to make a left turn.”
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“It happens so many times when I’m on the corners that the cars really don’t pay attention and almost run over your feet,” says Juanna Ricketts, a Halifax resident of about 12 who frequently walks through the city.
The City says it expects speed bumps to be installed in September at the following intersections:
- South Park Street and Spring Garden Road
- Lacewood Drive and Dunbrack Street
- Lacewood Drive and Parkland Drive
- Cobequid Road and Glendale Parkway
- Joseph Howe Drive and Dutch Village Road
- Main Street and Main Street
“I’m not a big fan of speed bumps,” says Ron MacFarlane, who frequently drives through town. “I’m a fan of what they put on with the rotating pedestrian light [white] before the light turns green, I think that makes a huge difference to pedestrian safety.
“I’d like to make Halifax more pedestrian friendly,” says Matt Sheehan, who has lived in Halifax all his life. “I think for a long time we focused on making it easier for cars to move. Right now we need to focus (on eliminating) some of the traffic problems we have here.
HRM expects the dents to be installed in September and removed prior to snow removal efforts. But the big rigs will otherwise have to drive over it.
“Left-turn traffic calming has been implemented in other jurisdictions, including Toronto and New York City, with promising results in increasing traffic safety,” the municipality states.
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“I think it’s worth experimenting with and hopefully if it doesn’t work or if it doesn’t solve the problem, I’m sure they can remove it,” says pedestrian Alex Smith from the city. “So I think they should keep trying to rework the downtown area and make it good for pedestrians and drivers.”
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