Hamilton Mountain County John-Paul Danko will spend $553,000 to improve traffic safety in Ward 8
Hamilton Mountain County John-Paul Danko is taking a different approach to solving his neighborhood’s vehicle speed issues.
Instead of putting up speed pads and signs on every street in hopes of slowing down speeding vehicles, Danko took a “holistic” view of the neighborhood using IRS-approved traffic-calming strategies. citywide lessons learned from Vision Zero and comprehensive street guidelines to create what he hopes will be a safer environment for residents.
“I’m really excited to see the impact on neighborhoods,” said Danko, who identifies speeding as the No. 1 complaint from residents in his neighborhood.
After two years of work, the May 2 Public Works Committee approved the expenditure of $553,000 from Ward 8’s Capital Reinvestment Reserve to fund Phase 1 of Ward 8’s comprehensive street review. Council must vote on the recommendation at the May 11 meeting.
The idea of complete streets is to create a right-of-way design that fairly balances the needs of all users, regardless of age, ability, or mode of transportation. This is a change from the previous traditional design of a street that primarily focuses on vehicles.
Danko said safety improvements will include installing speed pads this spring on “high priority” roads, including Brantdale Avenue, Jameston Avenue, Hawkridge Avenue, Brigadoon Drive and Malton Drive.
Later this fall, Danko said, roads such as West 2nd Street, Belvedere Avenue, Clarendon Avenue, Lynbrook Drive, Caledon Avenue and Kennedy Avenue will need further design updates before some forms of calming measures. higher level traffic are installed, such as speed cushions. , baffles or bumps.
Danko said he has found that if speed pads are installed along a road, traffic simply shifts to other roads, creating road safety issues for property owners in that neighborhood.
“We wanted to take a neighborhood-wide approach and look at the impact on every street and every neighborhood,” Danko said. “It’s a different approach.”
The ultimate goal, Danko said, is to create safe neighborhoods and protect pedestrians, especially the most vulnerable like children and the elderly who walk along these roads.
“Children need to have a safe walking route to school,” he said.
Danko said Phase 2 of the comprehensive street review is being drafted and would include “more complex” designs to improve safety, including raised crosswalks, mini-roundabouts and overpasses. He said the redesigned roads should be integrated into neighborhood streets to reduce through traffic and slow down vehicles near schools. Funding, he said, is expected to be identified over the summer, with the expectation that work will begin in 2023.
Danko was the first councilor to request staff in the summer of 2020 for a comprehensive review of streets in his neighborhood, rather than taking a piecemeal approach that other councilors have taken. The committee approved $150,000 to hire a consultant to write the “complete streets” report.
“It was a long process, but really rewarding,” Danko said.