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West Kelowna to calm traffic in Shannon Lake neighbourhood
The district will implement several traffic calming measures throughout Shannon Lake to make the area safer for drivers, cyclists and pedestrians after hearing about key areas of concern Tuesday.
Representatives from Boulevard Transportation Group unveiled the Shannon Lake Neighbourhood Traffic Calming Plan at this week's council meeting.
After public consultations and information sessions with representatives from Shannon Lake Neighbourhood Association, BTG recommended traffic calming measures—including speed cushions, curb extensions and signage—in six locations.
Council unanimously agreed to go ahead with the work, which will cost the district $64,700.
The first change will occur at the intersection of Shannon Ridge Drive and Shannon Place. The public complained sight lines were poor at the intersection; therefore, the district will install two curb extensions and relocate the stop sign.
Speed cushions will be installed on Shannon Ridge Drive and Auburn Road to slow down drivers and discourage shortcutting. The speed cushions are different than speed humps as they have strategic gaps so emergency vehicles can drive past without being hindered.
A 50km/h speed sign will be installed on Shannon Way, east of Sundance, to give drivers an appropriate amount of stopping distance. The pedestrian crossing will be relocated at the intersection of Shannon Lake Road and Shannon Way.
Perhaps most significantly, a speed reader board will be installed along Shannon Lake Road: The roadway where Stew Tuningley tragically died in 2011 after a truck crashed into him while he was voluntarily cleaning up the roadside in an event sponsored by the Westbank Lioness Club.
In 2011 the district approved its Traffic Calming Policy; Shannon Lake is the first neighbourhood that the new policy will affect.
“This is a good start,” said Coun. Rick de Jong.
“I do see this as a beginning, and I certainly hope that we’re going to be tracking this moving forward to see how effective it is at addressing the identified issues.”
Coun. Bryden Winsby also voted in favour of the changes, but questioned whether or not they will have an impact on driver behaviour.
“I think we could probably look upon this as an experiment of sorts and really keep a close eye on how well it works before we get carried away in other areas of the community,” said Winsby.
“We’re going to perhaps find out what works best and what really is a waste of time and money.”
The $64,700 worth of changes will be funded from the district’s reserves and future expenditures. Council also directed staff to follow-up with a report on the effectiveness of the traffic calming 90 days after the measures have been implemented.