Break­ing down bar­ri­ers

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that’s hap­pened that’s hin­dered life and safety at this point. I would like to see it re­solved mu­tu­ally. Again, I just don’t see why this couldn’t be looked af­ter (come) April 1, 2020,” said Daniels, not­ing that there is al­ready a rec­og­nized emer­gency ac­tion plan in place for that area.

Coun­cil then cited ex­am­ples of in­ci­dents that oc­curred in or near The Cross­ing over the past year that could have had dev­as­tat­ing con­se­quences.

On March 4, a mo­tor ve­hi­cle ac­ci­dent near the en­trance of The Cross­ing caused the road to be blocked to traf­fic while the scene was cleaned up. The res­i­dents quickly re­al­ized that if there was a med­i­cal emer­gency, for ex­am­ple, they would have to wait for help.

“I ap­pre­ci­ate that we have not yet had an in­ci­dent or is­sue but the fact is, the in­cor­po­ra­tion of our con­sol­i­dated units will not take place un­til April 1, 2020,” said Coun. Tanya Leopold, who said she fully sup­ported the war­den’s mo­tion.

On Sept. 20, there was a gun scare at Avon View High School. Leopold said as a par­ent, she wanted to know what would hap­pen if the school needed to be evac­u­ated and there was only one road in and out.

“Let’s put some­thing there. I don’t want to wait un­til April 2020,” said Leopold. “I wanted this in my very first month as coun­cil­lor and I’m not a vol­un­teer fire­fighter, a first re­spon­der or a REMO com­mit­tee mem­ber, but I’m a par­ent, like many oth­ers, that wants some kind of as­sur­ance that there is a method to evac­u­at­ing stu­dents or ac­cess­ing them.”

Coun. Randy Hussey has long been an ad­vo­cate for the emer­gency gate. He’s brought up the sub­ject sev­eral times at pre­vi­ous coun­cil meet­ings only to have the idea met with op­po­si­tion from Wind­sor.

“This is a safety is­sue. It’s been a safety is­sue for years. It makes ab­so­lutely no sense to have this road blocked with a per­ma­nent bar­ri­cade,” said Hussey, not­ing that the other pos­si­ble emer­gency ac­cess site, which is lo­cated be­hind the school and is blocked off by a ce­ment par­ti­tion, is not an ideal set up.

“This is the only vi­able so­lu­tion. I will call on the Town of Wind­sor now to do the right thing and take down the fence once we pass this mo­tion.”

Daniels asked what would hap­pen if Wind­sor re­tal­i­ates.

“My ques­tion is, if we put a gate up on the West Hants side, what hap­pens when Wind­sor digs a trench? Is it worth it?” she asked.

For Leopold, she just wants to see the gate in­stalled.

“I’m re­spon­si­ble as a coun­cil­lor to res­i­dents of West Hants. If Wind­sor wants to dig a trench be­fore we con­sol­i­date, dig it,” she said. “I did my part.”

Coun­cil­lors voted 8-2 in favour of rec­om­mend­ing to coun­cil that they ap­prove in­stalling the gate by the end of Jan­uary 2019, with fund­ing com­ing from the op­er­at­ing re­serves. This rec­om­men­da­tion will be brought for­ward Dec. 11 for a for­mal vote.

Fur­ther, they will pro­vide keys to the ap­pro­pri­ate emer­gency or pub­lic safety providers to use the gate.

Ad­di­tion­ally, they plan to write a let­ter to the Town of Wind­sor and Hants West MLA Chuck Porter ad­vis­ing them of coun­cil’s pend­ing ac­tion.

Abra­ham Ze­bian

Tanya Leopold

Jen­nifer Daniels

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