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Residents continue fight for traffic deterrents on Joy Ave. in Perth

by | Aug 15, 2019 | Local News | 0 comments

Dorothy and Peter Whitehead have lived on Joy Ave. for the past 43 years, and in that time they’ve seen a lot of changes but now they’re particularly concerned about traffic volume, speed and safety on the street, especially with two apartment complexes approved in the area.

“Joy Avenue is a small road that was relatively calm until the installation of traffic signals at the corner of Leslie, Isabella and Wilson Street. Joy Avenue then became a shortcut and speedway for cars coming from the Scotch Line through Perth to the Highway 7 area,” wrote the Whiteheads in a letter to the town.

In response the town launched a comprehensive traffic study of the area, and found that less than half a percent of divers exceed the posted 50 km speed limit and that 95 percent of all vehicles travel at or below 42 km per hour, with the bulk travelling at or below 38 km per hour, according to a report presented to Committee of the Whole on August 13th.

“I feel it was done according to the rules and regulations, now using a lot of computer generated information, however I don’t feel that it addressed the personal issues of the people living on Joy Avenue,” Dorothy Whithead told Lake 88 in response to the report.

The evaluation principles for the traffic study are done on the safety of the street, according to Grant Machan, Director of Environmental Services.

“Safety is becoming an issue on both Joy and Leslie Street,” wrote the Whiteheads, “We have more children using the street as a way to enter Stewart School through the back entrance at the end of Joy Avenue.”

Machan pointed out that Joy Avenue had sidewalks installed on the west side of the street in the 1990’s to address the safety of children walking to the rear entrance of Stewart School.

As to the volume of traffic, and the perceived increase in heavy truck traffic, the study found that the number of vehicles travelling on Joy Ave. is well within the capacity of the street, which is designated as a collector.

The study results show that there are on average 8,115 vehicles per week travelling along Joy, or about 1,159 vehicles per day, well within the capacity of a collector street.  About one and a half times as many cars travel north as travel south on Joy and just slightly more than 1 percent or 88 vehicles per week are delivery trucks, the rest are private vehicles and pick ups.

“After evaluation on Joy Avenue, through our traffic study process we determined that the street didn’t warrant additional traffic calming measures,” said Machan.

However cognizant of the concerns of residents, Machan did make several recommendations. “I did recommend three key items one of which is the presence of the OPP at the stop sign at Leslie Street and Joy, to do an education program there. The other is the installation of delineators at the Joy and Lewis Street intersection to keep vehicles in their lane, that will inherently slow down traffic,” said Machan. 

He’s also recommended painting parking spaces on Joy Street, which will visually narrow the street and encourage drivers to slow down further.

“I felt that some of his recommendations were legitimate but I do feel that it’s important that they look to the point of having a few deterrents such as even one speed bump, would be a deterrent,” said Dorothy in response.

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