Friday, December 18, 2009

cars first?

Pedestrians not revved up over transportation plan
Craig Campbell, Dundas Star News Staff
Published on Dec 18, 2009

A transportation master plan that promotes short term improvements for vehicles while delaying improvements for pedestrians, cyclists and public transit was disappointing to some who reviewed the plan at an open house Tuesday.

Retired family doctor Bob James, a member of the Dundas Community Council, said the master plan does not do enough to address pedestrian crossing of Hatt Street and creates new issues at the intersection of King and Ogilvie.

“It’s disappointing,” James said. “I thought there would be more.”

His concerns were echoed by Randy Kay and Reuven Dukas of Transportation for Liveable Communities.

They noted adding new turning lanes were short term recommendations at three intersections, while most pedestrian, cycling and transit improvements are recommended over the medium or long term.

“It’s making it easier for more vehicles to drive faster, and harder for pedestrians,” Dukas said.

Kay said widening intersections will make crossing more dangerous for pedestrians.

They also questioned the master plan’s long-term recommendation to develop a “multi-modal” transit facility just outside the downtown core and extend B-Line service from University Plaza to the new transportation facility.

Dukas suggested that project should be done in the short term, and the intersection changes to improve traffic flow should be scrapped.

The Downtown Dundas Transportation Master Plan recommends further studies be completed on the issue of traffic calming on Hatt Street and Creekside Drive, and that the intersection of Hatt and Memorial Square be studied in the future.

The plan also recommends a Transportation Demand Management Strategy be developed for downtown Dundas. The strategy’s goal would be to “delay, defer or even eliminate the need for significant capital investment in new transportation infrastructure.”

A 60-day public commenting period continues until Feb. 1, 2010.

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