The time for stud­ies is over

The Victoria Standard - - Commentary -

Mr. Min­is­ter:

You are com­mit­ted to do­ing more stud­ies? Where was the traf­fic im­pact stud­ies when Irv­ing de­vel­oped their prop­erty to in­clude the Trans­fer Truck Card Lock Pumps and the Tim Hor­ton's? Oh, that's right, Irv­ing didn't bother get­ting per­mis­sion or per­mits so there wasn't any stud­ies done and the prov­ince al­lowed them to get away with that. Of course, this is Irv­ing's M-O: Better to beg for­give­ness then ask per­mis­sion, eh? Just like when they hooked them­selves onto the vil­lage water sys­tem un­der the cover of dark­ness.

So here we are with a ma­jor traf­fic sit­u­a­tion on the Trans-canada High­way, cre­ated by a bil­lion dol­lar pri­vate com­pany, and you are about to put Nova Sco­tia tax pay­ers on the hook to try and rec­tify this sit­u­a­tion that the prov­ince al­lowed to hap­pen.

You re­cently re­duced the speed lim­its on the same high­way in Wag­mat­cook and Why­co­co­magh from 70 to 60 even af­ter a Speed Zone eval­u­a­tion deemed it un­nec­es­sary. Why? Be­cause peo­ple died.

You've al­ready done road stud­ies in our area, too. For nearly 18 years, the Vil­lage, Vic­to­ria County and the public have been push­ing for a speed re­duc­tion here. I heard you grew up in In­go­nish, so I know you're not un­fa­mil­iar with the area.

And by the way, hav­ing a sum­mer stu­dent count cars, 9am-5pm, M-F, is not go­ing to yield an ac­cu­rate eval­u­a­tion of this area. The New­found­land Ferry traf­fic comes through twice daily, be­fore 8 AM and af­ter 6 PM usu­ally, and causes chaos in the Irv­ing park­ing lot and on the high­way. This is greatly am­pli­fied dur­ing the tourist sea­son.

I heard the Deputy Min­is­ter ex­pe­ri­enced the sit­u­a­tion first hand while he was in town re­cently. The public has spo­ken, sir. The time for stud­ies is over. The time for ac­tion is upon you. Step in, Mr. Min­is­ter and re­duce the speed limit. If some­one gets hurt or killed due to speed, you are at fault now, sir. And once again, this sit­u­a­tion was cre­ated by the bil­lion dol­lar pri­vate com­pany, Irv­ing, do­ing what­ever the heck they want with­out the required per­mits. And it won't be fully solved un­til they ac­tu­ally ex­pand their op­er­a­tion so that it can fit the traf­fic that uses it.

What DTIR has pro­posed to do on the high­way is not go­ing to do a whole heck of a lot be­cause Irv­ing doesn't plan on mak­ing their space any big­ger to hold the traf­fic, es­pe­cially the truck traf­fic that en­ters and ex­its there. Even though they have the prop­erty and means to do so. Jen­nifer [Anderson’s] grand­fa­ther sold Irv­ing that prop­erty in the 70's. It stretches from the high­way all the way back to Big Farm Road in Big Bad­deck. There's plenty of room for Irv­ing to rec­tify the sit­u­a­tion they cre­ated.

In order to make this area safe, all three things have to hap­pen: Irv­ing needs to greatly ex­pand their op­er­a­tion, the road project and the speed re­duc­tion [sic]. To not do all three is to not solve the prob­lem. But what's likely to hap­pen is the usual - the bil­lion dol­lar com­pany will do what­ever costs them the least and the prov­ince will wait un­til lives are lost be­fore real ac­tion is taken.

Don­ald Green Bad­deck, NS

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