Slow it down

Char­lot­te­town’s parks and recre­ation chair­man wants lower speed lim­its around play­grounds

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - PROVINCE - dstew­art@the­ Twit­­wart

Char­lot­te­town’s parks and recre­ation com­mit­tee is ask­ing the pro­tec­tive and emer­gency ser­vices com­mit­tee to take a look at speed lim­its.

Parks is rec­om­mend­ing a speed re­duc­tion near play­ground ar­eas to ei­ther 25 or 30 kilo­me­tres an hour.

“We have young chil­dren who are walk­ing to the parks. Some­times they go by them­selves; some­times they’re with their par­ents and some­times they run ahead of their par­ents,” said parks and recre­ation chair­man Coun. Mitch Tweel. “If the traf­fic is go­ing 40 km ( per hour), it can be very dan­ger­ous, even though we do have cross­walks.’’

Tweel said he would also like to have some thought put to­wards speed lim­its in school zones where the speed limit is lower only when chil­dren are present.

He noted that, while the speed limit is higher out­side of school hours, chil­dren play in school play­grounds and sports fields at all times of the day, year-round.

“These venues are in op­er­a­tion, par­tic­u­larly at this time of year, in the morn­ing straight through to dusk,” he said.

The pro­tec­tive and emer­gency ser­vices com­mit­tee has not met yet to dis­cuss the re­quest made by parks and recre­ation, so no one wanted to spec­u­late on what, if any­thing, might come of it.

Deputy Po­lice Chief Gary McGuigan said the cri­te­ria of spe­cific ar­eas would have to be looked at first.

Tweel said he un­der­stands it may take some time to go through the process but sug­gests the city per­haps look at an area or two as a pi­lot pro­ject.

“If we can make it safer for our chil­dren to com­mute and walk back and forth to the play­ground, I think that’s a good thing.’’

Speed­ing in the city is an is­sue that comes up of­ten at city coun­cil’s monthly public meet­ings. The city has re­sponded in the past to con­cerns around play­grounds near schools with mea­sures like ex­tra stop signs and speed bumps.

“Let’s slow it down around play­grounds,’’ Tweel said. “Speed­ing traf­fic is a ma­jor is­sue in this city.’’

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