Grey Highlands councillors troubled by rural intersection

Grey Highlands council would like more information and data about an intersection that local residents say has safety issues.

At its meeting on April 17, Grey Highlands council voted 4-3 in favour of a full staff report about the T-intersection at Sideroad 22A and the Holland/Euphrasia Townline just west of Goring. Two local residents, Christopher Tschirhart of Chatsworth and Maxime Brabant of Grey Highlands, wrote a letter to council, Chatsworth Mayor Scott Mackey and the local OPP expressing safety concerns about the intersection.

“We have been residents of properties at this T-intersection for the past decade and in that time, there has been, to our knowledge, ten accidents at this intersection caused by people not stopping at the end of Grey Highlands Sideroad 22A proceeding through the intersection and into the ditch line of the opposite side,” the letter stated.

The letter described a recent accident on Easter Sunday when a vehicle ended up 13 metres into the woods on the other side of the road.

The letter writers suggested four potential safety upgrades that could improve the situation.

Mayor Paul McQueen lifted the letter from council’s consent agenda for a further discussion.

“There seems to be a recurring of incidents at this intersection,” said McQueen, who suggested he could have a direct follow-up conversation with Mackey and staff of the two municipalities.

The Holland/Euphrasia Townline is the border road between Grey Highlands and Chatsworth.

McQueen’s suggestion set off a discussion around the council table about how to deal with requests from residents for safety improvements on local roads.

“We’re getting several of these. We need to have some discussion of a standard procedure rather than dealing with them as one-offs, we need to look at our policy,” said Coun. Tom Allwood.

Coun. Joel Loughead suggested a follow-up staff report with more information about the road and McQueen noted that council should take action on the matter.

“It is our responsibility, if it’s brought to our attention, to address it,” he said.

CAO Karen Govan suggested a detailed staff report with information and data about the intersection from the OPP be prepared for council’s consideration.

“We’re having ad hoc conversations around the council table about risk and liability,” said Govan. “(Staff) need to have that opportunity to research and come back with full information to council.”

Council approved the resolution to request a staff report in a 4-3 vote with Deputy Mayor Dane Nielsen and councillors Dan Wickens and Nadia Dubyk opposed.

Chris Fell, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, CollingwoodToday.ca