Shelburne to reduce default speed limit to 40 km/hr

·5 min read

Traffic in Shelburne will soon be moving a little bit slower.

Town council, during their meeting on June 28, directed staff to take the immediate steps in reducing the Town’s default speed limit from 50 km/hr to 40 km/hr.

“Lately the talk and concerns have been speeding and not just on Greenwood, but everywhere,” said Coun. Lindsay Wegener. “It’s our job to try to defer that and try to make sure that it doesn’t continue to happen.”

The decision to lower the speed limit comes after a motion, brought forward by Coun. Wegener, to implement speed humps along Greenwood Street as a way to mitigate speeding on the residential road, was defeated 6-1.

“I certainly don’t want to discount speed humps, but personally, I’m not prepared to support a motion to immediately implement them without some further analysis,” said Mayor Wade Mills.

Prior to the vote, Coun. Shane Hall said he would be supportive of the motion if relief was provided to motorcycles and bicycles for safe travel.

“Generally speed humps go across the entire lane,” said Hall. “Motorcycles and bicycles, especially in Greenwood seeing that it has multi-purpose with the signage down, I have concern that might be an issue.”

Wegener in response said she had spoken with motorcycle enthusiast in the community about going over speed humps and that if the motorcycle is doing the speed limit, they’re not as dangerous.

“If you’re speeding, of course, you’re going to dump your bike, but if you are doing the speed limit and or less because you know of the signage that you were coming up to speed hump, someone who’s a motorcycle enthusiast should know how to control their bike, and they would be safely able to travel over them,” said Wegener.

Coun. Kyle Fegan also shared similar concern with the speed humps, and presented an alternative option with speed pylons, which the Town has used in the past, as a way to deter speeders.

“[It] gives you a visual deterrent and subconsciously slows the drivers down,” said Fegan.

It was noted during the discussion that other municipalities have had concerns of damage such as scratching vehicles with the speed pylons.

“There’s a whole host of options out there and just because they may work on a particular street in a neighbouring municipality doesn’t necessarily mean that translates to Greenwood Street in Shelburne,” said Mills.

With the default speed limit being lowered to 40 kilometres in the Town, council will have to amend their bylaw. An amending bylaw will be given to council at their July 12 meeting, which once amended will be given to the province for short-form wording.

With areas in the town designated as community safety zones, CAO Denyse Morrissey noted it will need to be determined whether the entire town is designated under these zones, which have significantly higher fines.

“A ticket in a 40, is hopefully a very meaningful deterrent,” said Morrissey. “The OPP would also be advised of this direction for enforcement purposes.”

All roads in Shelburne, excluding the connecting link portions, will see the speed limit reduced to 40 km/hr.

“Generally speed humps go across the entire lane,” said Hall. “Motorcycles and bicycles, especially in Greenwood seeing that it has multi-purpose with the signage down, I have concern that might be an issue.”

Wegener in response said she had spoken with motorcycle enthusiast in the community about going over speed humps and that if the motorcycle is doing the speed limit, they’re not as dangerous.

“If you’re speeding, of course, you’re going to dump your bike, but if you are doing the speed limit and or less because you know of the signage that you were coming up to speed hump, someone who’s a motorcycle enthusiast should know how to control their bike, and they would be safely able to travel over them,” said Wegener.

Coun. Kyle Fegan also shared similar concern with the speed humps, and presented an alternative option with speed pylons, which the Town has used in the past, as a way to deter speeders.

“[It] gives you a visual deterrent and subconsciously slows the drivers down,” said Fegan.

It was noted during the discussion that other municipalities have had concerns of damage such as scratching vehicles with the speed pylons.

“There’s a whole host of options out there and just because they may work on a particular street in a neighbouring municipality doesn’t necessarily mean that translates to Greenwood Street in Shelburne,” said Mills.

With the default speed limit being lowered to 40 kilometres in the Town, council will have to amend their bylaw. An amending bylaw will be given to council at their July 12 meeting, which once amended will be given to the province for short-form wording.

With areas in the town designated as community safety zones, CAO Denyse Morrissey noted it will need to be determined whether the entire town is designated under these zones, which have significantly higher fines.

“A ticket in a 40, is hopefully a very meaningful deterrent,” said Morrissey. “The OPP would also be advised of this direction for enforcement purposes.”

All roads in Shelburne, excluding the connecting link portions, will see the speed limit reduced to 40 km/hr.

Paula Brown, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter, Shelburne Free Press

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