Langford council agrees with residents of Glen Lake Road, who continue to be concerned about the speed and volume of traffic flowing through their neighbourhood.
Council voted in favour of installing traffic calming measures between Sooke Road and the roundabout at Parkdale Drive at last week’s council meeting.
“We appreciate when residents take the time to write down their concerns,” said Langford Coun. Lilian Szpak.
These concerns, voiced over the past few years and more recently in emails asking the City to install traffic calming measures to reduce speeding, prompted council to address the issue last week.
Back in 2009, a traffic study was done before and after the traffic light at Sooke and Happy Valley roads was installed. It found approximately 15 per cent of traffic on Glen Lake Road was using it as a short cut to avoid the light. In more recent years, Westhills has developed and Glen Lake Park has seen improvements, both of which meant increases to the traffic flow in the area, a problem only expected to get worse with continued development.
“It’s a pretty well-travelled corridor,” said Szpak, noting council decided to take action now, partly due to the upcoming Belmont school opening. “We will always put our focus on safety,” especially when regarding routes to schools, she said.
After an initial assessment, the City’s engineering department found two locations where medians, similar to the one in the 2700-block of Peatt Rd., could be installed as a traffic-calming measure while minimizing interference with driveways. However, the current road width did not support the already installed bike lanes with the addition of medians.
“To work properly the road should not be widened,” said Michelle Mahovlich, director of engineering.
Staff laid out two options for council to consider. The first, estimated to cost $14,000, was to not widen the road and have one short shared lane on either side of the median. The second, estimated at $24,000, was to widen the road and allow the bike lanes to continue unbroken at the median.
Council also had the option of doing nothing at this time, but approved option one.
Mahovlich said that two medians would be installed at roughly 3114 and 3161 Glen Lake Rd., where they wouldn’t interfere with anyone’s driveway. She said construction is scheduled to be completed before school starts in September.
Szpak, whom often rides her bike in the area, describes Glen Lake Road as a “long undulating ribbon of a road.” She said the best option for the road would be to break up the sight lines and force drivers to slow down. “It’s good practice to try and break up the road.”
“Often it’s a perception of speeding that you have,” she said, adding that no recent studies have been done to document speeding. “The RCMP can’t be there 24-7 monitoring it.”
She suggested that if residents are concerned about speeding in their neighbourhood, they could arrange to borrow portable speed boards, which display a passing car’s speed and act as a deterrent, reminding drivers to slow down.