Country Road traffic increasing
Council approves 12 new residential applications
Residents in the Country Road area of Bay Roberts are concerned about an increased level of traffic.
Deputy Mayor Bi l l Seymour brought those concerns to the council chambers during a May 8 meeting.
He said he spoke with one resident who counted over 200 cars passing by her front window over the course of one hour.
“The road was not built for that volume of traffic,” said Seymour.
He figures the change in traffic patterns began last summer as motorists attempted to find quicker ways around construction activities along the Conception Bay Highway.
The delays have since ended, but Seymour believes many motorists have continued using Country Road as a shortcut from the CB Access Road to the Conception Bay Highway.
That includes large commercial vehicles destined for stores in the commercial district along the Conception Bay Highway and Water Street.
“The road isn’t wide enough for all of this traffic,” said the deputy mayor.
Residents who enjoy the occasional stroll have also raised concerns over the increased traffic, and Seymour agrees with them.
“There isn’t any room for walkers to get off the road,” he said.
Both sides of the road are either driveways for residences or ditches.
To cut down on the amount of traffic, Coun. Clarence Mercer suggested installing temporary speed bumps.
While there was no resolution reached during the meeting, Seymour said discussions will continue. Much ado about curbside recycling Another item raised at the meeting was the issue of curbside recycling.
Aided by the spotlight being shone on illegal dumping in the province, Coun. Mercer said he would like to see the town get a jump on curbside recycling rather than waiting until next year to map out an approach.
“I’d like to see a plan prepared now so that it can be rolled out for next year,” he said. “There’s a lot of footwork to be done before starting such a program and we’ve been putting it off and putting it off for the last couple of years.”
Mercer, along with other councillors, suggested that Bay Roberts begin looking at what other towns are doing.
“Once we have enough information, we can go ahead and start up with some knowledge instead of without knowledge,” said Coun. Melvin Walsh. “So, that next year we can do it right and not have to be correcting things all the time.” Mayor Philip Wood agreed. “I would like to see us move before next year,” he said.
Wood wondered if it would be possible to start a program with cardboard and paper, but one big obstacle stands in the way of any solution — the distance of the town from Robin Hood Bay in St. John’s.
“Unfortunately, I don’t see any progress being made on Harbour Grace,” he said, alluding to proposed bulk waste management site in the town. “I was hoping it would be a valuable resource for the town.”
The site is designed to help alleviate the illegal dumping in the region.
One problem that Bay Roberts is bound to run into is the lack of gold standard for curbside recycling when it comes to town’s that are not quite urban centres, and council recognized that.
Mercer said the time is now for members of council to put their heads together and work out a plan.
“I would like to see some meaningful discussion,” he said. Evaluating boundaries Bay Roberts has begun the process of re-evaluating its municipal boundaries with the intentions of extending them.
The town recently received an application for residential development in the Rocky Pond area. It received a similar application in 2010.
The town has the option of accepting the application as is, or it can explore the option of the extending its borders to the other side of Rocky Pond in Shearstown.
Choosing the latter, Wood said the process of extending the town boundaries to include the proposed area of development would allow for Bay Roberts to service the site and collect taxes.
Chief administrative officer Nigel Black said the process is a lengthy one as it includes the Crown Lands division, as well as neighbouring towns.
New home explosion
Previous to last week’s council meeting, Bay Roberts had previously approved 14 new residential applications.
With an additional 12 approved at the meeting, that number jumped to 26 this year.
“It is certainly unusual for one meeting to approve that many. I’m not sure if it’s a record but it’s the most I’ve seen during my time on council,” said Wood.
He said the number of applications approved did not include a couple of sites in Coley’s Point that still needed site visits.
“There were more referred to planning,” said the mayor. “It’s a bumper year.”
Bay Roberts deputy mayor Bill Seymour