Halton Hills and North Halton newspapers
OPINION: No easy solution for road woes
Independent & Free Press (Georgetown, ON), 12 Jul 2006, p. 6

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Discussing Halton's road system is much like talking about the weather; everyone has an opinion, but there is little that can be done about it. Halton Region staff presented its 2005 State of the Regional Road System Report to the region's planning and public works committee last week and, not surprisingly, the report outlined some current problems. While the document contained a plethora of traffic and road usage information, the fact remains finding solutions for the problems identified in the report won't be (1) easy; (2) inexpensive; or (3) coming anytime soon. The report found that speeding continues to be a problem on rural roads, primarily in north Halton, where at least a half a dozen rural roads made Halton's top-20 list of high-speed locations. Region staff suggest that speeding is a problem on rural roads because there are few indicators for drivers to slow down, such as parked cars or curbs. We'd venture that drivers also enjoy a sense of freedom on these less-travelled roads and, along with fewer police patrols, are more inclined to put the pedal to the metal. As the report indicated, increased police patrols provide a short-term fix and have only a marginal impact on speeders. A long-term solution, it suggests, lies with engineering, enforcement and education. That means altering the roadways and increasing police presence which also means spending more money that isn't currently available. Traffic congestion was also a main focal point in the report and the document indicated east-west corridors in Halton (such as Dundas Street and Upper Middle Road) "experience severe congestion during peak periods". Many roads in north Halton experienced "moderate" levels of congestion. Hmm, let's see. More development = more people = more vehicles = traffic congestion! Nope, no surprise there. While some roadwork is already under way this year to improve congestion problems, the fact is this work-- as is almost all roadwork-- is reactive to the problem and not proactive. The region is simply playing catch-up to traffic woes that have existed for years. As famed news anchor Peter Trueman often said, "That's not news, but that too, is reality."

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12 Jul 2006
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Trueman, Peter
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OPINION: No easy solution for road woes