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Traffic study falls short, residents say
A recent traffic study in Charleswood fails to address some major concerns in the community, some local residents say.
On Oct. 10, the city’s public works department held an open house at Charleswood United Church to present the findings of the six-month study, undertaken to address traffic concerns as new developments such as Ridgewood South and Seasons of Tuxedo begin to take shape.
The study addressed pedestrian safety along Grant Avenue near the Eastern Star Chalet and the Wellington Senior’s Home, along with a school transportation safety analysis around Royal School, and assessed the possibility of widening Shaftesbury Boulevard and Wilkes Avenue.
Lifelong resident Marnie Manerch said the study fails to address increasing traffic concerns along Charleswood Road where she lives.
"Sometimes I have to wait five to 10 minutes to get out of my house," she said.
Manerch has witnessed "several spectacular, traumatic accidents" along her street and would like to see more speed bumps installed to make the road safer.
"It’s become a racing strip," she said.
At the meeting, a large map of Charleswood was laid out on a table. Community members were encouraged to use sticky-notes to note their areas of concern.
Some residents said they are concerned about the study’s recommendation to keep Wilkes at its current width, even though traffic is expected to increase substantially over the next few years.
"I hate it. It’s already in poor condition," said George Friesen, who drives to work along Wilkes every morning.
"Getting off the side streets onto Wilkes is already difficult, and it’s just going to get worse with more traffic."
Another resident, Tom Reimer, agreed.
"The road is poorly constructed," he said.
"I’m lucky to have a truck because I’ve had mornings where I’ve pulled up to four people out of the ditch."
Kenn Rosin, the city’s public works project manager, said the study was launched to address issues that were already made known to the city.
Feedback generated at the meeting gives the city better insight into problems that aren’t being addressed, he said.
"It gives us information so that we can potentially deal with problems on a one-off basis," he said.
The study also assessed speed and traffic volumes on Laxdal, Harstone and Elmhurst roads, along with Rannock Avenue, Shaftesbury and Grant.
The study will be presented to the Assiniboia community committee on Dec. 4, Rosin said.
For more on the study, visit www.winnipeg.ca/publicworks/MajorProjects CharleswoodTransportationStudy.
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