To the Editor,
Thank you for the great editorial response titled "A Civil Response." Who knew that putting up a stop sign on a residential street near a school and hospital would cause such a polemic!
My wife and I moved to Paxton street from St. Clair & Bathurst in Toronto about a year ago. We were shocked by the lawlessness on both our street and downtown Port Perry as a whole. We were also surprised by the absence of 4-way stops, reduced speed limits, crosswalks, and traffic calming measures such as speed bumps, one typically sees on residential streets, particularly near schools and hospitals.
I organized the petition with residents to have the speed limit changed to 40 km/h and we asked for stop signs at all three intersections between Simcoe and Old Simcoe. Residents who have lived here for over 35 years say there used to be all-way stops on the street and they were all removed. Since then, they've witnessed a steady increase in traffic. The latest traffic count numbers I have in an email from Public Works average close to 2300 cars per day!
Our grievances to the township were immediately dismissed by staff when we first complained last summer, so I bought a radar gun and started taking video of people speeding. I've measured people going 90 km/h on Paxton. I reached out to Councillor Back and she has fearlessly championed our cause in the face of ignorance and opposition.
These are some of the arguments we've heard against stop signs, some of which were brilliantly defended by our unelected regional councillor, Bobbie Drew. They are listed in order of ridiculousness:
People aren't actually speeding, A stop sign won't slow down traffic, We can't have stop signs on Paxton because people won't be able to get up the hill, There will be ambulance sirens sounding 24/7, People will die on the way to the hospital because it will slow them down, and last but not least: stop signs cause global warming!
Councillor Back and the Council did a great job getting this across to the finish line. Let's hope this sets precedent and we will see more stop signs on Paxton and other Port Perry streets.
Thanks for your coverage of this and for balancing out that ridiculous letter. His analogy about driving in Europe is analogous to saying there are no stop signs on the 407...
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