Ward 7 Update – April 8, 2012

Hi all – hope you enjoyed the long weekend. Here is a quick update on recent council decisions and neighbourhood issues.

New School Zone

The Alerces Spanish Bilingual School will be moving into St. Martins United Church at the corner of Wilson and Clarence, and as a result a new school zone will be implemented at this location. The signs will likely be installed within the next couple of months, so please be aware of the new speed restrictions in that area.

Traffic Bridge

The Traffic Bridge was up for discussion once again at last week’s Executive Committee meeting. There is still no finalized funding plan or construction timeline for the bridge, and there were no funds dedicated to this project by the recent provincial budget. Because the demolition of the current bridge and construction of the new bridge are not imminent, the administration asked us to decide whether or not to remove a span of the bridge on the east side of the river, and we ultimately voted to do so. This will allow for improved pedestrian and vehicular flow in the interceding time before a new bridge is built. Why not just take down the whole bridge, you might ask? In order to demolish the entire bridge a coffer dam would have to be built in the river. This is considerably more expensive and complex than removing this span which is over land. As a result, the rest of the bridge will be demolished at the same time the new bridge is constructed.

Parking

Executive Committee recently voted to increase the early payment option for parking fines from the current $10 option to $20. Since 2010, there has been a marked increase in the number of tickets issue at expired meters. As you may have discovered, it’s actually cheaper to park downtown and get a $10 ticket than it is to plug your meter for a full day. This has lead to a lack of turnover in parking spots, which is problematic for businesses in metered areas. The late-payment fine is still $50, and this change is likely to take effect this summer.

Recycling

I’ve had several constituents ask me recently when the City’s recycling program will take effect, and whether or not they should renew their private subscriptions. The short answer to this is that we don’t yet have a start date, and as such I can’t really offer any advice about whether or not to renew your subscriptions. Council expects to consider the results of the recycling RFP on April 16th. Until then, I suggest you call your provider and ask about their cancellation and refund policy in the event that a city program is implemented relatively soon.

Take care,
Mairin

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