Brantford councillors unanimously approved an expenditure of up to $120,000 for the construction of raised crosswalks and pedestrian crossovers to slow down traffic during their Committee of the Whole meeting on Tuesday, April 4, 2023.
Moved by Councillor John Sless and seconded by his ward mate Councillor Gino Caputo, the two directed Staff to construct crosswalks and pedestrian crossovers that will be located on Ava Road at Stymie Boulevard, Oakley Road, Gaywood Gardens, and at Glenhyrst Art Gallery to provide a designated safe crossing point for vulnerable road users and to slow down motorists.
Staff were also directed to construct an additional pedestrian crossover to be built on Ava Road at Scarfe Gardens, as well as, a raised median island be installed on Ava at Hardy Road to recuse vehicle speeds and provide traffic calming.
“This is the culmination of three years of working with that neighbourhood we finally got to a point in the last meeting where we got consensus on how they feel the area could be improved safety wise,” said Sless. “A lot of the concern was the closure coming this entire summer for the the Ava Road overpass – there is going to be an awful lot of cut through traffic going down Ava Road this year. Also the recently approved development on Hardy Road in the development that’s ongoing behind the hurt the Hershey complex back in off of Oak Park Road.”
Councillor Dan McCreary confirmed with Mark Jacklyn, Director of Operational Services for the City of Brantford, that the proposed raised crosswalks would stop larger vehicles from being able to straddle a speed hump and would effectively slow down vehicles.
McCreary mentioned the police involvement has not been able to help reduce speeding and wondered if Staff could have Police Services dedicated to helping with speeding in the area.
Traffic calming discussions continued during the meeting as Councillor Rose Sicoli moved a traffic calming solution for Catherine Avenue. Councillors unanimously approved constructing a speed cushion, costing up to $15,000 on Catherine Avenue.
Sicoli noted both her and Councillor Michael Sullivan have heard that residents are concerned with speed.
“Residents have raised concerns about the safety of pedestrians and the children in the area and whereas numerous requests have been received by Ward 1 councillor’s,” she said.
“…,It’s become quite dangerous and I’ve seen it first-hand ,my brother used to live on Catherine Avenue and I spent a great deal of time visiting the area and the cars were absolutely flying down that little stretch and I understand you’re [workers] exhausted because you just worked a 12 hour shift and you want to get home, but there are so many children on that street.”