Pedes­trian sig­nal may see red

Driv­ers not slow­ing down for yel­low pedes­trian light near Car­bon­ear hos­pi­tal

The Compass - - FRONT PAGE - BYMELISSA JENK­INS Melissa.jenk­

The Town of Car­bon­ear has en­dorsed a sug­ges­tion to mod­ify a pedes­trian-ac­ti­vated light near Car­bon­ear Hos­pi­tal in or­der to im­prove safety at the new cross­ing. The flash­ing yel­low light will be changed to a solid red light, pend­ing ap­proval from the pro­vin­cial gov­ern­ment. The move is in re­sponse to con­cerns about high speeds in the area, and a pedes­trian-ve­hi­cle col­li­sion in Septem­ber that re­sulted in in­juries.

A new pedes­trian cross­walk with a flash­ing yel­low light near Car­bon­ear Gen­eral Hos­pi­tal is al­ready be­ing ig­nored by mo­torists, say town of­fi­cials.

Dur­ing the bi­weekly coun­cil meet­ing on Oct. 21, pub­lic works di­rec­tor Brian O’Grady said the lights are barely caus­ing peo­ple to slow down, lead­ing to safety risks.

A traf­fic ex­pert was brought in to in­spect the cross­walk —which links a new park­ing lot on High Road South to the hos­pi­tal — af­ter com­plaints of speed is­sues and a pedes­trian-ve­hi­cle col­li­sion in Septem­ber.

The ex­pert rec­om­mended the yel­low pedes­trian- con­trolled light should be changed to red, to pro­mote a full stop.

Al­though O’Grady said he has never seen a cross­walk with a red light, he felt it was worth dis­cussing with coun­cil.

“Cars don’t slow down with the f lash­ing lights,” Deputy Mayor Ge­orge Butt stated dur­ing the meet­ing.

Mayor Sam Slade added, “I see no prob­lem see­ing a red light there.”

A mo­tion was made by Coun. Ed Goff to ap­prove the new light, pend­ing ap­proval from the Depart­ment of Trans­porta­tion and Works.

Mean­while, rum­ble strips are go­ing to be in­serted into the pave­ment around the cross­walk as well to re­mind peo­ple there is a cross­walk ahead and the max­i­mum speed limit is 30 kilo­me­tres per hour.

The con­trac­tor will re­turn in the com­ing weeks to com­plete the job, O’Grady ex­plained.

Park­ing con­cerns

Nu­mer­ous ve­hi­cles have been park­ing at the recre­ation fa­cil­ity on Val­ley Road across from Car­bon­ear Academy, and be­ing left there un­til at late as 8 p.m. said recre­ation di­rec­tor Rob But­ton.

But­ton has de­ter­mined some of th­ese ve­hi­cles be­long to res­i­dents who com­mute to jobs in Long Har­bour and Bay Bulls, who drop their ve­hi­cles off be­fore car­pool­ing to their des­ti­na­tions.

Park­ing ex­tends from the ten­nis courts to Paddy’s Gar­den. How­ever, But­ton noted that, in some cases, th­ese ve­hi­cles are be­ing parked in front of the pool, where de­mand for park­ing is great­est.

A so­lu­tion was de­ter­mined by the coun­cil that notices will be placed on the wind­shields of those who con­tinue to park in th­ese spots that they must find other park­ing. It was even de­ter­mined they can use the park­ing area closer to Paddy’s Gar­den.

Hedge dis­rupt­ing line-of-sight

Coun­cil dis­cussed a hedge lo­cated on Crowdy Street that has been a con­cern to pedes­tri­ans and driv­ers. The hedge is pri­vately owned, but it has grown over the road, im­ped­ing sight­lines for mo­torists.

Coun­cil­lors were very vo­cal about the con­cern, adding some­thing must be done quickly. It was sug­gested the town send work­ers up with chain­saws to trim back the hedge, since it was a pub­lic safety con­cern.

“If it’s not clear sight, we have the right to make clear way,” Slade said.

Butt agreed, say­ing it needed to be cut down.

“It has been on­go­ing l o ng enough,” Coun. David Kennedy added.

Town ad­min­is­tra­tor Cyn­thia Davis noted a let­ter had al­ready been sent to the res­i­dent, but so far the hedge is still over­grown.

Davis has pre­vi­ously been in con­tact with the town lawyer, and sug- gested to re­turn to him to find out what else they should do be­fore cut­ting it down.

Skatepark in op­er­a­tion

The new skatepark in Car­bon­ear is open, and stu­dents from Car­bon­ear Academy and Car­bon­ear Col­le­giate have had the op­por­tu­nity to test it out.

More than 20 youths gath­ered with skate­boards, scoot­ers and BMX bikes at the Val­ley Road park Oct. 28 to en­joy the new fa­cil­ity.

The park was four months in the mak­ing, with a month-long de­lay from the an­tic­i­pated open­ing date in Septem­ber.

Youths us­ing the fa­cil­ity didn’t ap­pear to mind the de­lay af­ter fi­nally get­ting to step foot on safe and user­friendly equip­ment. They no longer have to risk get­ting hit by cars on park­ing lots or pub­lic streets, which is where they pre­vi­ously skated.

The park is just one of many up­grades be­ing sug­gested by the coun­cil’s recre­ation com­mit­tee.

But­ton noted there is a four-year plan in place to up­grade more of the lo­cal ar­eas to user- friendly and up­dated equip­ment, with a fo­cus on Crocker’s Cove play­ground, which has re­cently lost a slide.

Bas­ket­ball hoops have ar­rived for Crocker’s Cove as well, along with bike racks for var­i­ous lo­ca­tions around town.

There was also a sug­ges­tion for some up­grades to the Car­bon­ear Recre­ation Com­plex, but specifics were not dis­cussed.

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