Drivers along a busy Thunder Bay street may soon need to lift their feet off the gas pedal as one city councillor says it's time to calm traffic on Junot Avenue.
Brian McKinnon would like to see traffic slow down along the busy road near Blucher Crescent and Windsor Street because so many children cross Junot to go to school or to the Boys and Girls Club.
McKinnon said the speed limit could be lowered in the short term, with city staff looking at other measures over the long term.
"They will look at some permanent solutions," he said.
"It might be a crosswalk, it might be flashing lights. It may work in well with the EMS station."
Alaina King, who co-chairs the neighbourhood's Community Action Group, said she's glad to hear council will look into making the area safer for kids.
‘Needed right now’
The issue was brought forward a few months ago at council, when King said some safety measures were needed in the area. She said her main concern involves the kids going to Algonquin Avenue School, Hammarskjold High School and the Thunder Bay Boys and Girls Club across the street.
There is a crossing guard at Windsor and Junot, before and after school, but not when children get out of the boys and girls club in the evening — or during the summer.
"I think it's needed right now," she said. "Because with the spring and summer coming up, the increase in traffic flow is picking up here."
The road is slated to be four-laned in a couple years, so McKinnon feels a permanent fix isn't the best use of tax dollars.
For now, he said, temporary measures can be taken, such as "trying to calm the traffic either by slowing it down [or] … making it a neighbourhood safety area."
Police have patrolled the area to slow down traffic, but he noted officers can't be there all the time
"There has been an increased police presence … during rush hour," he said. "Hopefully that will step up a bit."
Over the long term, McKinnon said he'd want flashing lights reminding drivers to slow down.
The lights could be integrated with the nearby ambulance base, making it easier for paramedics answering a call getting onto Junot Avenue, he noted.