Roads: maintaining and improving

As I have indicated in another posting, investments in roads are not high in my value equation.  But once we have them, we do need to maintain them; and for sure, we need to address serious safety issues.   York Region gave Council a report on May 30 reviewing various road projects.

I was very pleased to hear that Environmental Assessments (EA) have been kicked off for two very dangerous intersections on Keele:  17th and 18th Sideroads. 1st public information meetings will be this fall; targeting construction for 2015.

Safety will be improved along the King-Vaughan line.  In 2011 there will be temporary signal lights at Dufferin, Keele and Jane.  More permanent improvements will be made in the out years.   There will be an innovative (for us) solution for the Dufferin intersection-a roundabout.

The new intersection at Keele and 15th Sideroad is targeted for completion September 2011.

Assessment of King Road (Hwy 27 to 400) has started to determine capacity improvements and safety issues.  1st public information meetings will be in October.

I think the oft repeating caution of “be careful what you wish for” is very appropriate when these projects are being considered.   It will be critical that the public attends the public information meetings to understand the identified issue/problem and to provide feedback on the possible solutions.  Notices for these meetings will be in the papers; I will also make you aware.  Please spread the word to your neighbours!

Roads: building new ones

Has a new road ever really solved a traffic congestion problem?  No.  And despite that this is proven over and over we continue to create new rivers of pavement and pour million of dollars into first building new roads and then maintaining them with the goal of enabling more traffic to flow more effectively.

The Province has identified the need to improve the connection between Vaughan City Centre and Guelph.  As I, like many others, have experienced the constant almost uninterrupted flow of trucks moving east/west on the 401 the need “to do something” is accepted. At the outset of this project, the new corridor (called the GTA West Corridor) was described as being either a rail one or a road one; sadly but not unexpectedly a road option has been selected. (more…)

Gas Pipeline Construction

As mentioned in an earlier posting I have had an outstanding question with Enbridge about the “make-up” of the 3,600 pipeline strikes in Ontario.

Statistics for 2010 have now been provided.
67% (2,412) of damage- causing strikes were on 1/2 inch pipes i.e. pipes to supply gas to homes; most of these would have been caused by individuals installing trees and fence posts.   Next highest hits were 14% on 8 inch and 8% on 6 inch.  Largest hit pipe is 12 inch and that size had <1% hits.

My take on this is that there is certainly risk with the 16 inch pipeline being installed, but to cite 3,600 strikes in 2010 as evidence of such magnifies it.

To reduce the risk I am still asking for concrete pads/plates above the pipeline; it is still being considered.

I can’t write this post without commenting on the construction program. If you have chosen to drive through Pottageville during the past few weeks you will be well aware of it.  For the residents (more…)

Unexpected Rich Experiences

When I decided to run for a Councillor position I had a pretty good idea about the “work” although the specifics were a little vague.  One aspect I did not appreciate was the amount and variety of “extracurricular” activities to which I would be invited.

To date my criteria for selection has been either one of familiarity and a passion for the issue; or, little familiarity and the desire to learn more.  3 events attended (or to be attended) in April and May illustrate the scope very well.

Thursday May 26 I will be attending a symposium in King City on ‘Loyalty To Country’  hosted by the Ahmadiyya Muslim Jama’at of Maple.  Speakers will be from the Muslim, Jewish and Christian faiths.  The intent is to provide a a forum to increase understanding of different religions in our community, share knowledge, promote tolerance and work towards living in peace and harmony which is the prime objective of the Ahmadiyya Muslim Community. I am honoured to have been asked to fulfill the role of moderator at the symposium.The event is being held at King City Public School; registration is at 6:30PM.  For more information about the event read here. (more…)

Are small changes ever truly “small?”

There are now two active cases in Ward 1 which appear to be very small in terms of numbers; but, one as to ask whether the impact, the long term strategic impact is small?    Two houses here, three houses there on lands currently not zoned for residential housing and on lands of environmental significance; what is the significance?

1st case–As I reviewed in an earlier posting there is a proposal to permit two residences to be built on two parcels of land which are effectively “peninsulas poking into the Environmental Protection Area of King City.” Currently per the York Region Official Plan the two parcels are zoned rural and as such non-farm residential is prohibited.

2nd case–At May 16 Council a Public Meeting is being held to initiate the public process for assessing an application to re-designate property from transitional zoning to a zoning enabling 3 residential lots on the south side of Wellington St. in Snowball.  In our Hamlet Secondary Plan the subject lands are designated Hazard Lands and Oak Ridges Moraine Countryside Area; it is within the Oak Ridges Moraine (more…)

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