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Problems involved in solving our traffic woes

Last month I attended home and school meetings at both Northlea and Bessborough schools. At the top of both agendas was student safety as it relates to traffic.

Of course, the volume of traffic was and is always an issue but most of the discussion centred on driver behaviour of Leasiders themselves. I was asked by parents to make it a topic of discussion in my article.

Writing articles of this nature are always difficult as no one likes a pontificating politician or being lectured. However, the reality is that we all care about the safety of our children and sometimes a gentle reminder can be helpful.

While we often like to blame non-Leasiders, to truly address those drivers we either have to (a) take measures to cut down on traffic infiltration or (b) step up enforcement. 

(a) Last month I suggested possible measures to address traffic infiltration in the central part of the community and have received numerous emails from residents concerned about the “inconvenience factor.” Unfortunately, if we are going to reduce cut-through traffic (and not simply push it onto another street) there is no way around added inconvenience to local residents.

(b) Until the province (which appears to be dragging its feet) approves the use of technology-based enforcement, it is doubtful that we will receive the level of enforcement needed to make a meaningful impact.

In respect to local drivers, one of the home and school’s biggest concerns is parents either dropping kids off in no-stopping zones or parking in prohibited and often dangerous spots. It is crucial that sight lines – especially around schools – are maximized, so please either use the kiss-n-ride services or take the extra couple of minutes to park in a safe spot even if it is a short distance away.

While many people were angered by 53 Division’s assertion that approximately 50 percent of drivers ticketed were local residents, irrespective of the number, let’s help to improve the safety of our community by being extra careful.