A group of area residents came out triumphant during this week’s city council meeting, with the city’s elected officials near-unanimous in their support for removing an objected-to street sign.
A vandal had apparently taken the law into their own hands prior to the meeting by removing the sign, which prohibited left turns from Stonegate Drive onto Beatrice Crescent.
Area resident Agnes Beck reported the sign’s removal to Sudbury.com before this week’s meeting took place, at which time she expressed optimism city council members would not allow the city to replace the sign.
The lone vote of city council against a motion by Ward 11 Coun. Bill Leduc for the sign to be removed came without explanation from Ward 2 Coun. Michael Vagnini.
The sign was installed this summer through a motion by Leduc which came in response to a public consultation session whose participants advocated for it. Area residents not invited to the meeting, such as Beck, have since pointed out its shortcomings.
Leduc admitted not all residents were invited to the meeting, and said this was a result of COVID-related crowd size considerations.
The sign was installed as a one-year pilot program in an effort to lessen traffic on Stonegate Drive, but area residents concluded early on that the program had failed.
Sudbury.com visited the intersection last week and found the majority of motorists ignored the sign – an observation a handful of residents in the area said they had also made.
“I hope that the residents of Ward 11, that we can work together to find future traffic-calming solutions for all the neighbours,” Leduc said after his motion to have the sign removed passed.
His motion requires the city to consult with residents of various area streets for “alternative traffic-calming measures and to report the results of that to the operations committee during the second quarter of 2023 for consideration.”
A few other traffic-related concerns appeared on this week’s city council agenda, including a motion by Leduc for an all-way stop sign at Second Avenue and Greenwood Drive, which he withdrew following criticism it might not create safer road conditions as intended.
Traffic-related concerns, mainly centered on speeders, is a “constant complaint,” Ward 9 Coun. Deb McIntosh said.
“It’s constantly coming into our inboxes and it really does have to stop,” she said, pointing out there were two traffic-related deaths in Greater Sudbury that morning alone.
“Would you please just slow down, people.”
These fatal crashes included a crash on Lasalle Boulevard which left a female pedestrian dead and a male pedestrian with serious injuries. The 34-year-old driver of the vehicle police allege is responsible was arrested and charged with dangerous operation causing death and dangerous operation causing bodily harm.
On Radar Road that same morning, a 42-year-old man was killed in a head-on collision.
The city’s budget allows enough funds for the installation of one permanent traffic-calming device per year. This year, the city installed traffic-calming bollards along 10 of the city’s highest-ranked locations as a means of tackling more roads. The bollards received positive reviews from area residents on Robinson Drive Sudbury.com connected with last month.
Six red-light cameras will go live and begin issuing $325 tickets to motorists who run red lights, automated speed traps could be in Greater Sudbury as early as next year and a 40 km/h speed limit in residential neighbourhoods pilot program is being introduced this year.
Tyler Clarke covers city hall and political affairs for Sudbury.com.