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Township to look at traffic-calming measures in St. Jacobs

Township officials are looking into traffic-calming measures along Water and Young streets in St. Jacobs in the wake of concerns raised by residents.

The presentations at Tuesday night’s council meeting weren’t the first time the matter’s been raised – complaints go back several years – but the impending closure of King Street for reconstruction will bring detours that will exacerbate the problem.

Among those calling on Woolwich to take action was Young Street resident Nicola Bywater, who suggested measures such as additional stop signs, rumble strips, speed indicator signs and parking restrictions to ease growing concerns about traffic volumes and speeding.

Given the number of families with young kids, there’s a real fear for their children’s safety, she stressed, noting the village is also home to large number of seniors.

“We need to do what we can to be proactive to protect our most vulnerable members.”

Melissa Fishman, president of the St. Jacobs Community Association, suggested an all-way stop at Water Street and Abner’s Lane, where children cross on their way to school. Likewise, a stop sign near the park would also increase the children’s safety, she added.

Residents said they’d like to see changes made before a new subdivision at the south end brings more people and more traffic.

Ward 2 Coun. Mark Bauman endorsed some of the recommendations, including an all-way stop at Water Street and Abner’s Lane, adding the intersection of Queensway Drive and Princess Street near St. Jacobs Public School. Noting the speeding concerns, he asked staff to contact Waterloo Regional Police about stepping up enforcement in the village.

The township will also look at prohibiting parking along one side of Water Street while it’s being used as a detour route during the King Street reconstruction.

Acknowledging one of Bywater’s comments, Bauman said he’d pass along concerns to St. Jacobs firefighters who might be in too much of a hurry when heading into the fire station on Water Street.

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