Speed limit on 50A Avenue to be reviewed

A request for a speed limit reduction has been sent to the town’s operational services committee for a second review.

A request for a speed limit reduction has been sent to the town’s operational services committee for a second review.

The request involves 50A Avenue between 33rd Street (formerly Highway 11A) and the Summer Village of Jarvis Bay boundary.

Resident Ran White, on behalf of Sylvan Lake Holding Society, asked for a reduction of the maximum speed to 30 km/hr. The function of the society, which has been in existence for about 50 years, is to protect and maintain the lake frontage of homes along 50A Avenue at the extreme east end of Sylvan Lake townsite.

Currently the speed limit on the short stretch of road in town is 40 km/hr. immediately east of 50A Avenue where the street enters the Summer Village of Jarvis Bay, the speed limit is 30 km/hr. Then Lakeshore Drive just west of the junction of 50A Avenue is also 30 km/hr.

“This has an occasional effect of spurring drivers to speed up excessively when they enter this stretch of road,” White said in a letter.

Speaking to council, he said for three seasons it’s not a problem, but during the summer the area is busy with pedestrians. There are no sidewalks or bicycle paths on the street.

The group’s request was originally presented to the town’s operational services committee last November. “The committee considered your request and directed staff to take no action to change the speed limits as currently posted at this time,” wrote Allan Gassor, director of operations, following that meeting.

The society’s request made sense to Councillor Sean McIntyre. “I think a 30 km speed limit is warranted, particularly with no sidewalks.”

Councillor Dale Plante agreed. “I was on op. services and the biggest concern was the narrowness of the road, the lack of sidewalks, especially with people parking parallel to the road. I don’t think it was about volume, it’s about safety of the road.”

However Councillor Laverne Asselstine didn’t agree. “I hate to see ranging speeds in the community. When you start changing speed limits, going up and down, people don’t pay attention and get in a position where they’re speeding. The standard speed limit in the community is 40. Keeping the same throughout the community is fair.”

Later he added, the town should be looking at the bigger picture and “have engineering look at upgrading the road surface, put in a sidewalk. We should be looking at that as the picture”.

Councillors voted to send the request back to the operational services committee for review and recommendation back to council.