Prob­lem park­ing

Sum­mer­side mulls Wil­low Street traf­fic sit­u­a­tion

The Guardian (Charlottetown) - - THE ISLAND - BY COLIN MA­CLEAN Colin.Ma­cLean@Jour­ @Jour­nalPMacLean

Sum­mer­side City Coun­cil is con­sid­er­ing elim­i­nat­ing more park­ing spa­ces on Wil­low Av­enue.

The move is a rec­om­men­da­tion from the Sum­mer­side Po­lice Ser­vices and was dis­cussed dur­ing a re­cent com­mit­tee of coun­cil meet­ing.

The pro­posal is to elim­i­nate park­ing in an area equiv­a­lent to five park­ing spa­ces on the north side of the street, near 511 Wil­low Ave.

Most re­cently, the city has been re­ceiv­ing com­plaints from that prop­erty owner re­gard­ing the dif­fi­culty cross­ing horses from their prop­erty on one side of the street to Red Shores at Sum­mer­side Race­way on the other side.

Horse cross­ing signs were re­cently re­in­stalled in the area, but the is­sue is ap­par­ently per­sist­ing.

Traf­fic prob­lems in gen­eral on Wil­low Av­enue are not new. Ex­ces­sive speed and park­ing is­sues have been on­go­ing com­plaints for some time.

Wil­low Av­enue, where it emp­ties onto Green­wood Drive, has a soc­cer field, skate park and vol­ley­ball courts on ei­ther side, so it’s a con­gested area dur­ing sport­ing events.

Coun­cil pre­vi­ously voted to elim­i­nate park­ing along the south side of the street en­tirely, cit­ing the same con­cerns of re­duced vis­i­bil­ity and the po­ten­tial for peo­ple be­ing struck as they walk onto the street from be­tween parked cars.

The pre­vi­ous park­ing ban along with this new pro­posal prompted some coun­cil­lors to won­der whether the city should ban park­ing on the street en­tirely rather than deal­ing with one-off is­sues as they arise.

“I just think even­tu­ally we’re go­ing to be sit­ting here talk­ing about tak­ing (park­ing) out af­ter a kid gets killed. Be­cause I see them walk out be­tween the cars and you can­not see them. Heaven for­bid some­thing like that hap­pens, I just don’t want to be go­ing back and say­ing we should have done some­thing af­ter some­thing hap­pens,” said Coun. Tyler Desroches.

Po­lice Chief Dave Poirier told coun­cil that there are some op­tions they could con­sider, in­clud­ing making Wil­low Av­enue a one-way street. How­ever, he cau­tioned that what­ever ac­tion coun­cil may take may prove ul­ti­mately use­less as peo­ple could just start park­ing along the side of Green­wood Drive, which has its own speed­ing and traf­fic prob­lems.

Coun­cil will make a fi­nal de­ci­sion about the five park­ing spa­ces at its up­com­ing monthly meet­ing.

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