Photo radar pro­posed for area school zones

Bayview Post - - News -

Wil­low­dale is no stranger to speed­ing cars. How­ever, the in­tro­duc­tion of Bill 65 by the prov­ince that would al­low photo radar in school zones has in­spired hope in res­i­dents that it may be im­ple­mented across more neigh­bour­hood streets.

“It’s been a prob­lem for decades,” said Ward 23 coun­cil­lor John Fil­ion. “As the main streets get con­gested, tran­sient traf­fic tries to cut through wher­ever they can. So you have speed­ing tak­ing place on at least half the streets in Wil­low­dale.”

In 2014, Fil­ion in­tro­duced Watch Your Speed, a pi­lot pro­gram, which brought 10 radar speed dis­play signs into school zones. Af­ter 11 months of test­ing, the city saw a re­duc­tion of the num­ber of ve­hi­cles over the speed limit and a de­crease in op­er­at­ing speeds.

But al­though some signs re­main at cer­tain cor­ners, res­i­dents be­lieve there is much more to be done.

“They have a so­lu­tion,” said Mike Capo­to­sto, pres­i­dent of the West Lans­ing Home­own­ers As­so­ci­a­tion. “They could do photo radar.”

How­ever, there is strong op­po­si­tion to the im­ple­men­ta­tion of this tech­nol­ogy in On­tario. Chris Klimek, who founded the site nopho­toradar.ca in Jan­uary 2016, ar­gues that photo radar tech­nol­ogy serves more as a tick­et­ing tool than an ef­fec­tive way of min­i­miz­ing speed­ing ac­ci­dents.

“Why would we want a tech­nol­ogy that won’t ac­tu­ally ap­pre­hend any­one?” asked Klimek. “There are so many other tools that would be much more ef­fec­tive than a sim­ple tool de­signed for rev­enue gen­er­a­tion.”

The Safer School Zones Act, passed by On­tario in late May, will be de­vel­oped over the next few months with no known date of im­ple­men­ta­tion.

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