The number one issue for all people at the door is safety. The details are different, but that's what it boils down to. We need to focus on safety for people in our current neighbourhoods and begin solving the laundry list of issues I've been collecting.
There are many ways to reduce speeds. All the residents I've talked to at the door in areas where they recently put down speed bumps have been very unhappy. They haven't reduced speeds between the stops, one woman was injured in an ambulance on the speed bumps on Starwood Dr. after having a seizure, and many motorcyclists have told me they have to veer into oncoming traffic or bike lanes as they cannot go over them safely. I, and others, flagged these safety concerns with the city and cited studies. We need to listen to community feedback and use proven methods that do not cost tax money to remove every winter. You can read the op-ed I wrote on this safety issue on the Guelph Mercury.
Traffic calming is definitely needed. We can do that with stop signs and traffic lights, allowing for more crosswalks along long busy streets like Starwood Dr, Eastview Rd., Woodlawn Rd., Grange Rd., Watson Parkway and stretches of Victoria Rd. Many inner streets also need traffic calming. Speed cameras were shown to reduce speeding by 26% in Mississauga and they can get bad drivers off the road by having their licences removed after repeated infractions. We need to target bad drivers without punishing others and causing safety issues for everyone else.
Crosswalks, Stop Signs and Traffic Lights
The suggested maximum distance for a crosswalk is 30-60 metres. We have stretches of 900 metres on streets like Eastview Road, which makes it impossible for our goal of a 'walkable' community to exist. This needs to change. I will push for these safety improvements. Stop signs and traffic lights added to fast moving streets can help with both speeding and pedestrian flow. As a project manager, I'm very invested in making sure our streets are planned well. I have listened to your concerns about being able to back out of your driveways and walk your kids to school. I will push to see these are addressed at council.
I discovered when I moved to Guelph that we were allowing new communities to be built without sidewalks on both sides of the street. I discussed this with my two councillors at the time through a safety and accessibility lens. Since then, the city has reviewed and altered the master transportation plan so that we won't have this issue moving forward. Also, after seeing me in action, both James Gordon and Rodrigo Goller have endorsed my run for city council. They know I have the background and skills to make these safety improvements for Guelph. As a member of the Accessibility Advisory Council of Guelph, I have experience vetting city development plans and a knowledge of provincial standards.
Guelph has a goal to increase our cycling safety and I commend them on these plans. I have been a part of these reviews with the Accessibility Advisory Council. We just need to make sure that our budget matches our needs and that kids and adults can all use our bike lanes together.
Large Trucks and Road Quality
Currently we have main roads being used like highways in Guelph. This causes damage to the roads, affects our air quality, dramatically increases noise pollution, adds to traffic congestion and is a safety concern for cyclists. Unless a truck is required to be in the city for a delivery, they should be routed to the roads outside the city which are much more suitable and farther from residential spaces. Our tax dollars shouldn't be spent on fixing roads as though they are highways. The Provincial government has a much larger budget and they are the ones who should be responsible for that maintenance. I would propose regulations limiting large trucks in the city, which would help us save money, increase safety and improve our environment in Guelph.