Stop speeding, plead residents of Charlottetown neighbourhood
Charlottetown city councillor Mitchell Tweel says more traffic enforcement is the key
Residents of a downtown Charlottetown neighborhood are calling on city police and their city councillor to take action against drivers who speed and disregard stop signs.
"There's been an ongoing issue with speeding on our street, Orlebar Street, where people will often run the stop sign," said Ellen Mullally.
"There's a lot of young children and elderly people on our street … I'm just concerned somebody's going to be hurt."
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Mullally is encouraging residents to take down licence plate numbers and call city police when they see traffic violations in the neighborhood.
"Now when I witness anybody speeding, I'm just going to report it so at least then we'll have some data to work from," she said.
The North of Euston neighbourhood includes Orlebar, Upper Hillsborough and Upper Prince Streets and Walthen Drive.
Mullally also wants the city to look for other measures to slow down speeders.
"I'm okay with a speed bump, I know some neighbours are not as keen, I'm open to any ideas that would calm traffic," she said.
"Interestingly they're paving our street right now and I was noticing that without the potholes, people are going even faster."
'Pedal to the floor'
Ryan Mann, who has lived in the neighborhood for almost nine years, said many drivers seem to use the neighbourhood as a way to avoid traffic in downtown Charlottetown.
"They'll stop at the stop sign or kind of stop at the stop signs and then pedal to the floor."
He'd like to see some of the streets made one way, arranged so that the route is no longer a short cut through downtown.
"The only thing is to make this inconvenient to cut through," Mann said.
Bring back traffic division
Mitchell Tweel, city councillor for the ward, has been looking for answers.
"We need to do a comprehensive observation in terms of traffic patterns, in terms of speeding traffic," he said.
"This city was not built for traffic of this magnitude."
The city has $50,000 in this year's budget for speed bumps, but Tweel said the solution lies in better enforcement. He'd like to see the city re-introduce the traffic division, which was eliminated in 2009 after a review.
Now all officers are expected to do traffic enforcement.
"The number one priority in my mind would be enforcement," Tweel said.
"That's what people are looking for in these respective neighbourhoods."
Charlottetown police are aware of the issue.
"We certainly have dedicated resources to mitigate those concerns," said Deputy Chief Brad MacConnell. "We've increased patrols in the area."
MacConnell said police have monitored traffic speeds in the area and found a 98 per cent compliance rate with the existing speed limits.
But he acknowledged that residents still have concerns.
"Due to the fact that there's parking on one side of the streets and when the streets are narrow, it certainly feels that the cars are going faster or speeding in the area," said MacConnell.
"The perception of the residents is equally important to us and that's why you'll see extra patrols in those areas."
However, MacConnell said he doesn't support the idea of one way streets.
"We feel it actually would increase speeds because there is no deterrent from oncoming traffic to slow down," he said.