Some Charlottetown residents worry about extra traffic from increased development

·3 min read
Keith Notman says a steady line of cars makes it difficult for him to leave his residential road which is off Towers Road.  (Zoom - image credit)
Keith Notman says a steady line of cars makes it difficult for him to leave his residential road which is off Towers Road. (Zoom - image credit)

Charlottetown has seen a lot of development in the last couple of years — residents around the Royalty Crossing Shopping Mall worry about the extra traffic that comes with that.

Towers Road which leads to the back of the mall has several apartments and townhouse developments in the planning stages, under construction or recently completed.

Keith Notman lives off Towers Road.

Laura Meader/CBC
Laura Meader/CBC

"It's got to a point now where we virtually can't turn onto Towers Road, either left or right at busy hours, like in the morning or at night," said Notman.

"Charlottetown seems to be hung up on development even if it's at the detriment of people in the surrounding neighbourhoods," he said.

CBC spoke with several other residents who said they too are concerned about increased traffic on the road.

Notman said he worries when he sees more development activity, and said there should be a sidewalk.

"The volume of traffic on Towers Road is continually increasing," he said. "It upsets us."

Proposed new road

Scott Adams, the manager of Public Works for the City of Charlottetown, said the goal is to eventually move traffic elsewhere.

Public Works is recommending the city go ahead with the Spencer Drive extension which would create a new road linking University Avenue and Mount Edward Road. The planning board is expected to look at that recommendation soon.

"We want to make it appealing to the drivers to stay on the major [thoroughfares] and not cut through neighbourhoods," said Adams.

Laura Meader/CBC
Laura Meader/CBC

The new extension road would be four lanes, and include active transportation lanes. It still requires several stages of approval from the planning board to a public meeting as well as a council vote, budget approval and design phase.

It's expected to cost $3 million to $4 million.

"We see Spencer Drive as a priority," he said.

Adams said if approved he expects it could take a year before completed.

Laura Meader/CBC
Laura Meader/CBC

He said the proposed Spencer Drive extension would also see vehicles have restricted access to Ash Drive.

Some residents voiced concerns about traffic cutting through.

Public Works is proposing limiting turns onto the street.

Short-term measures

Adams agrees there is a high volume of traffic in the mall area most of the day, because people are looking to get from University Avenue to Mount Edward Road.

He said there may be more traffic delays as more people move into new developments, but he said traffic signals could be adjusted.

"It's something that we think we can handle in the short term," he said.

Tim Banks, CEO of APM Group said he has given 1.1 acres of land to the city to construct the new road.

He said when the road is fully developed it will be an improvement but said the existing road will be able to handle traffic.

Banks said he was disappointed the city had not put a sidewalk along Towers Road.

The city has put up plastic poles to stake off an active transportation pathway to give people a safer area to walk. The city said it's waiting to build an active transportation lane given that other buildings will soon be under construction and heavy equipment could damage a laneway.

Long-term transportation plan 

The City of Charlottetown ordered a comprehensive study called the West Royalty Transportation Master Plan which was released in March 2021.

The report contains a number of proposed changes over the next couple of decades, including the Spencer Drive extension.

 

 

 

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