Fall Schedule:

  •    Loose leaf collection is set to begin Oct. 22, 2018 and will run until the week of Nov. 19, 2018- weather permitting
  •    If weather conditions cooperate, we will continue to visit priority areas as time and budget allow. 
  •    Residents with street trees are asked to rake leaves to the curb by 7:00am on the first day of the scheduled pick- up week.
       Loose leaves that are raked too early can block storm inlets. 

 

For all of the information please go to the City Website at: 2018 Leaf Collection Program

 

The following issues were recently raised on the Eastbridge Facebook page. They are great items for discussion and the following is provided for consideration:

Issue 1: I am concerned about the amount of crime and vandalism we are facing.

Response: I am concerned about this as well and have followed up with Waterloo Regional Police Services (WRPS) on the matter. Their response relates to priority policing and the fact that Ward 4 is not the highest area of crime in the Region.

There are other areas in the Ward where crime also involves drug use and squatting in public spaces in addition to the break and enter experienced in Eastbridge.

Police Services are Regional Services. It is my hope that Regional Councillors will consider also taking a leadership role in trying to connect with WRPS. As a City Councillor I feel very constrained in my ability to gain traction on these issues.

Issue 2: I would like to know of plans to conserve farmland and green space.

Response: The City is very committed to honouring the limits of our growth and the constraint of the Regional “country-side line”. As an individual I am very committed to maintaining and where possible growing our green space holdings. I worked hard to protect an area of West Waterloo known as the McNally lands. Recently I raised the issue again to ensure that through the Comprehensive By-law process these lands were zoned with the highest open space protection available in the By-Law.

Issue 3: More low cost facilities that help keep youth busy like outdoor workout equipment under gazebos without a panic that they will be damaged. I wonder how the city would feel about outdoor workout equipment when they ban skating on outdoor storm ponds for fear of liability.

Response: I agree that we need more low to no cost facilities to help keep youth busy. Some recommendations around this issue as it relates to City holdings are included in the approved Neighbourhood Strategy. The report is located at: https://www.waterloo.ca/en/government/Neighbourhood-Strategy.asp.

In addition to the new library, the City has funding allocated and are planning to build an active sports park and splash pad in Ward 4. The active sports park will support BMX bikes and skateboard users. These will hopefully be designed and constructed by 2020.

In terms of fitness equipment in the green spaces I support the idea, but it is not in the budget at this time. If I can secure the City support for the placement, is the equipment something the community would consider fundraising for?

Issue 4: We also should add Micro dog parks similar to Kitchener (on the far side of the Millen woodlot beside the baseball diamond would be perfect, away from homes and near paths and parking and playground for dog families with kids).

Response: I agree with this idea and the City is looking at Dog Park options. If re-elected I will take this information to Council for consideration.

Issue 5: We have a very engaged group of neighbours that are initiating things like pick-up soccer in Eastbridge Green, flooding skating rinks and connecting local business to support each other. What will the candidates do to support these community-building efforts? How will they help to remove the barriers in City Hall when residents are interested in pursuing community-building and placemaking ideas such as creating a splash pad?

Response: Eastbridge is one of the most engaged Neighourhoods in Waterloo. Issues associated with supporting community building efforts, in particular “red-tape” and liability is one that has been raised by many councillors including me. The neighbourhood strategy (noted above) is a start at trying to address these issues and allow for organic community building outside of the City’s formal structures. I support community building efforts and will strive to remove barriers presented by the City.

Issue 6: What is the perspective of our candidates with regards to safety on our roads? Is traffic calming enough? Are our roads safe for our children? What could we do on the transportation file?

Response: As I discussed in my all candidate debate, this is the number one issue that I receive emails on. It is also one of the areas where I feel most constrained in my ability to affect change. The constraints are related to:

  • requirements of the Ontario Highway Traffic Act
  • inability to rely on police for enforcement
  • willingness on behalf of neighbours to speed in their own neighbourhood
  • lack of public support of use of traffic calming installations such as on-road bike lanes to reduce travel lanes (this removes the ability to park on the road), installation of mini roundabouts (often results in City taking their easements from front/side yards of homes)

I have written a number of articles related to traffic issues in the Ward and have asked for a number of traffic studies to be completed to assess the need for more traffic calming measures. I responded to individuals with regard to the traffic data but perhaps I should have shared it with everyone in the community. The following is the Staff report prepared based on an analysis of traffic data collected in Eastbridge.

Intersection Counts:

The 3 leg intersection of Eastbridge at Windjammer was counted this past November as well the 3 leg intersection of Eastbridge at Cabot Trail was counted this past June prior to school ending.

 

Both intersections were counted for vehicle movement as well as pedestrian traffic. Total pedestrian traffic refers to the number of pedestrians who crossed the Major street (Eastbridge) at the intersections, during the eight hour count (7:30 to 10:30 am; 11:30 to 1:30 pm and 3:00 to 6:00 pm). The results are as follows:

 

Date

Intersection

Major Street Volume

Minor Street Volume

Total Pedestrian Volume

Collisions

All-Way Stop Warrant

November 7

Eastbridge @ Windjammer

2206

384

20

None

All-way Warrant not met

June 19

Eastbridge @ Cabot Trail

1913

89

17

None

All-way Warrant not met

 

Based on the traffic counts, pedestrian volume and collision history; the addition of stop signs for Eastbridge traffic is not warranted. 

 

Additional information on stop signs is as follows:

  • The purpose of a stop sign is to control the right-of-way at intersections.  All-way stop control is installed in response to concerns regarding collisions, excessive motorist delay or pedestrian crossings at an intersection.
  • Improper use of all-way stop control unnecessarily restricts traffic flow.  This leads to frustration and disrespect for stop signs in particular and traffic control devices in general.  It also negatively affects the environment in terms of air pollution, noise and fuel consumption.
  • Many citizens believe that the installation of stop signs, either singly or at regular intervals, will serve the purpose of slowing down traffic on a roadway.  A stop sign will stop or slow down a driver at an intersection but many studies have established that the speed reduction is limited to a range of approximately 30 metres immediately adjacent to the stop sign.  Often motorists accelerate to an even greater speed after having stopped or slowed for a stop sign to make up lost time.  The effect on vehicle speed with a stop sign is limited.  Staff deems the installation of all-way stop control as a speed control device to be not appropriate.      

 

Radar Signs:

The City had their new radar speed signs set up between Cabot Trail at the all way stop and Windjammer for two weeks, between May 4th & May 18th. The AADT refers to the average daily traffic counted on Eastbridge. The 85th percentile means 85% of the vehicles that passed the radar sign were traveling at or below the speed indicated. The peak speed is the highest registered speed recorded over the two week period. The results for that are as follows:

 

AADT

Average Daily Speed

85th Percentile

Peak Daily Speed

1,151

34km/h

46km/h

60km/h

 

The speeds collected in May are appropriate for a minor collector roadway with a 50 km/hr speed limit.

Due to vandalism on the speed signs, they are currently unavailable for use.  Once our program is operational again, the signs will be placed on Eastbridge as an education tool. 

Mid-block Counts:

We had our ATR recorders placed on Eastbridge between Cabot Trail (closest to Bridge Street) and Windjammer as well as from Windjammer to the next Cabot Trail intersection. The AADT refers to the average daily traffic counted on Eastbridge. The 85th percentile means 85% of the vehicles that passed over the traffic devices were traveling at or below the speed indicated. The results for that are as follows:

 

Date

Location

AADT

Average Speed

85th Percentile

Sept 27 – 29, 2017

Cabot Trail to Windjammer

2,336

49km/h

59km/h

Sept 27 – 29, 2017

Windjammer to Cabot Trail

1,720

42km/h

52km/h

 

Painting:

The crosswalk lines across Eastbridge at the all-way stop at Cabot Trail and at the all-way stop at Windjammer/Bonavista are being completed.

 

Additional signage:

In conjunction with the park area being used for t-ball, seasonal traffic calming signs were installed on Eastbridge Boulevard.  Staff will be performing additional studies to determine how these signs affected vehicle speeds.  The data collected in 2017 will assist in determining if there were changes in driver behaviour.  The signs will be removed in early October prior to winter weather commencing.

 

At this time, based on the data collected, additional stop signs are not warranted on Eastbridge Boulevard.  In addition, the number of pedestrians does not warrant an additional facility to be installed specifically for them.

Staff will continue to monitor traffic on Eastbridge Boulevard for both pedestrian traffic and vehicular traffic. 

The highway traffic act uses a warranting system to ensure that traffic control is installed where it will be respected.  Unwarranted infrastructure goes ignored and the potential for pedestrian fatalities are increased because children, in particular, think they have right-of-way when they do not.  All pedestrians are required to ensure the way is clear prior to entering or crossing a road even when a cross-walk is present.  Therefore the approach to crossing is unchanged regardless of road painting and the fact of the matter is that road painting can result in an increase in collisions, in particular with pedestrians.

More broadly the City will be updating their Transportation Master Plan in the coming term of Council. If re-elected I want to raise the issue of maximum traffic speeds within subdivisions and ask the question is 50 km/hour too high?

 

The following section will be updated with Questions and Answers as they come up throughout the Campaign.

 

Q. People are using the garbage pail by the super mailboxes for personal garbage from their homes can this be resolved?

A. Please contact me when you see this happening and I will be pleased to contact the City Parks department to let them know about the issue.  City Staff are working with the Region of Waterloo waste management team to try to put an end to this illegal use.


Q. Is there any recreation facility or program that is being planned for the east side of the city?

A. In terms of facility and programs for the east side the City will be working with the Public Library to begin construction on a new east side library branch to be co-located on the RIM park property. Construction will begin in 2019 with a projected opening in the fall of 2020. The library runs many programs for pre-teens.

As well, the City is in the process of designing a new “active sports” installation for skateboarding and BMX bikes to be located on the RIM park lands. I think the planned opening of this is 2019.

With regard to a splash pad, I worked hard to get it into the budget and it is my hope that something will be installed in 2020 in one of the parks located in Eastbridge. The design, size and location have not been determined at this time, but money has been allocated.

As an aside, I know that a lot of people think that the west side has recreational investments, but in fact all of the neighbourhood pools and tennis courts are privately owned by the neighbourhood associations.

The City does not own or operate any public facilities on the west side except for the Albert McCormick Arena and the soccer fields on Westmount Road. The City provides funding to the Library board to operate the Harper Library and the Library at Albert McCormick.

The City of Waterloo does not have a community centre based model for service delivery like Kitchener. The primary community based centres the City operates are RIM, Albert McCormick, Bechtel Park, the Memorial Recreation Centre and the Adult Recreation Centre.


 
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