Roads

There is one common issue across Ward 5: traffic—how much, how fast and conditions of the roads.
Early in my 1st term I cited this on my blog. Since then there has been some progress but not nearly enough and unfortunately there is even more traffic in Ward 5 and the Township.

There are a couple projects of importance to Ward 5 in process.

King City GO station traffic issues    The inadequate parking at GO stations negatively affects traffic and roads. Commuters, worried about finding a space, drive more quickly to the station. And commuters who can’t find a space park on residential streets despite risk of tickets.

Metrolinx has acquired the land south of current station.  We are waiting to hear specifically what they intend to do and when.  We have been told that the idea of parking garage has been abandoned because of cost.  (Rule of thumb for such infrastructure is $40,000/space.)

There are 2 big problems in Ward 5 for which there is no project in process to resolve.
There are very real safety concerns with the intersection at Keele and 17th Sideroad. It is not on the current 10 year capital plan of York Region. I continue to raise the issue whenever there is opportunity.

A huge amount of traffic, including very heavy traffic, continues to go through King City on King Road and Keele. The resolution by at least 3 previous Councils for a bypass south of King Road has been unsuccessful.

Roads consume a large portion of budget. I know there are roads &streets in Ward 5 which merit maintenance. I will seek to ensure that Ward 5 is getting its fair share of budget dollars. Roads are a big consumer of budget money: In 2014, $2.8million of a $7.9 capital budget is for roads. Our 10 year capital plan of $70 million has $21 million for roads. I anticipate that the 2019 budget (which is in process) will have similar numbers, but larger.

6 Responses to “ “Roads”

  1. Victoria Olde says:

    Hi Debbie,

    I live in Ward 5 and would like to know why none of the existing roads were expanded once all of the development began?

    The traffic going through King City (especially Southbound on Keele in the mornings) is ridiculous and getting worst every year. Yet nothing seems to be getting done to address this. Furthermore, all of the parking on the street at King/Keele is only adding to the traffic during afternoon rush hour.

    I can’t understand why the Township of King hasn’t prioritized roads with all of the new development that has been going on? Hundreds of new homes have been built in King and surrounding arrears over the last 4 years and we have more and more congestion.

    Instead of trying to calm traffic, why doesn’t the Township of King try to help traffic flow by expanding roads, creating turning lanes, and synchronizing traffic lights?

    I can’t understand how the Township of King can even contemplate $10 to $20 million for a new city hall when our main roads are falling apart, some of the older streets don’t have sidewalks or functioning lighting, and not enough is being down to accommodate the traffic that comes with the urbanization of King City.

    Thank-you,

    V. Olde

    • Debbie says:

      Hello Victoria, There are many aspects to your question/comment which I will try to address.
      1. Traffic congestion, traffic speed is an issue across the Township. Specific details of course vary. And the responsibility for upgrading and maintaining all the roads infrastructure is divided between York Region and King. In 2016 $.26 of each King township municipal tax dollar was spent on roads, bridges, culverts. There were significant road projects in 2016: Church Street in Schomberg was reconstructed; top coat was applied to roads in King Station (i.e. Burns, Findlay etc.) The work done on the roads is prioritized based on findings from a survey on condition & traffic volume; I believe the last survey was done 2015.
      2. York Region is responsible for the arterial roads in King. Given that you live in King City I will confirm that Keele south of Lloydtown Aurora Road, King Road, Dufferin are in the scope of YR. We have asked YR to address the congestion at King Rd./Keele for a couple years now and have clearly not been successful. Options have included things you have mentioned i.e. eliminating or reducing parking, turning lanes. Clearly a very significant challenge is lack of space; at the intersection there are very narrow road allowances (i.e. buildings are close to roads), there is a railway bridge.
      3. Expanding/widening roads is not a solution for congestion; any improvement is short lived. And although most people are frustrated, even angry about the congestion in King City I doubt that there are many who would sign up for an additional lane of traffic. For more than 10 years King Council has asked for a King City By-pass; as evident it has not been executed. YR is interested in opening up the 15th Sideroad east to the 400; given the significant natural heritage features in that area an environmental assessment is required. YR has labelled this area as a special study area on their maps; but, at this point they do not have it in their 10 year budget to do the necessary EA.
      4. You have thrown out the estimate for the new Township Hall. What you have indicated is the total cost. I would like to clarify that the major source of funding for the facility is expected to be revenues from sale of current Town Hall site.
      5. You are so right about the sidewalks. At 2nd last Council meeting we did approved plan for Keele Street and King Road sidewalk infrastructure. Keele Street both sides (King Road to Station Road/Burton Grove) in 2018 and King Road East (Keele to 1970 King road) and King Road West (Keele to 2585 King Road) both sides in 2019. Funding for doing these projects is development contributions, York Region and Township.
      If you want to talk more about this let me know.

  2. Vile Jiran says:

    I also don’t agree with speed bumps since these are super annoying and destroy cars.

    • Debbie says:

      I know that speed bumps are not universally valued. Having said that the complaints from residents over several years and the various engagements with citizens, including the petition, has indicated that something like speed bumps are required to address a speeding problem. Staff is working closely the with Councillors in the affected wards (i.e. Councillor Mortellit and Grandilli) and the Mayor to ensure they are located appropriately. I have only heard of speed bumps damaging cars when there is excessive speed. Debbie

  3. Pat Di Fiore says:

    Hello Debbie

    I have many times expressed my concerns with the increasing amount of traffic flow through Kingscross Drive. Unfortunately and inevitably the flow will continue to increase with the amount of construction in the surrounding area.

    One of the problems with Kingscross Drive is that there is no separation between pedestrian and vehicles. The road is shared with automobiles, dog walkers, elderly taking a early morning walk, joggers and bikers. It doesn’t take a brain surgeon to figure out that this will lead to a serious occurence.

    On many occasions especially in the morning and evening I have witnessed excessive speeding as vehicles drive thorugh Kingscross as a conection to Jane and the 400 highway. The Culotta development which potentially could have 200 cars to the service the home owners, will also use Kingscross as a bypass to the 400 highway.

    Our family has always enjoyed biking,walking and jogging the streets as many others have as well. We enjoy the beauty that Kingscross has to offer and its a way for us to connect with our neighbours. Unfortunately, we no longer take the risk with the amount of traffic flow and speeding cars. Having witnessed close calls with pedestrians and traffic, I will not allow my family to take that chance.

    I don’t see how this continued traffic flow without any resolution is part of the sustanability of King.

    Pat Di Fiore

    • Debbie says:

      Hello Pat,
      You have described a very challenging problem. Unfortunately Kings Cross is not the only community with this problem; there are other estate developments in the Township which were built with neither sidewalks nor adequate lighting and they report a similar problem. The obvious solution (to install lights and/or sidewalks) is cost prohibitive. And even more unfortunate is the fact that even in more dense subdivisions where there are sidewalks, there are similar fears & worries. When I campaigned, safety or lack thereof, for pedestrians on residential streets was an all too frequent issue. And in all cases people said there was a problem now and it was only going to worsen with our own growth and that of York Region.

      We are looking at traffic calming measures. We have purchased a radar speed board. Yes, just one as they cost about $25,000. (We have had two older technology ones stolen.) I anticipate that we (i.e. Council) are going to be receiving petitions from two streets to install speed bumps. On the assumption that we do receive them and that the requests meet other criteria we then need to figure out how/when we can finance them. We are far behind road & sidewalk repairs as it is; to fund speed bumps will require dropping something else.

      You may be interested to learn more about traffic calming measures; you can read our policy here. http://www.king.ca/government/departments/Engineering/Pages/MunicipalConsentRequirements.aspx

      Speed bumps are not perceived by all as a valuable intervention; in fact many people are strongly opposed to them. Hence, as you will see in our policy, the 1st step is a petition to ensure that there is support for such an intervention. To be acted upon the petition needs to show 70% of the community as being on board.

      I truly regret that there is not an easy solution. From time to time we have been able to have York Region Police (YRP) to sit at residential intersections to observe, to ticket speeders etc. One of the learnings from that is that it is often the community members themselves who are speeding home.

      A crazy idea perhaps: What if the residents of Kings Cross all committed to be vigilant and to drive at the speed limit. Maybe that would slow down those passing through. Perhaps you could work this through the rate payors group. If you have any creative ideas pass them on.

      Finally, I do appreciate you alerting me to this problem in Kings Cross. Debbie

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