Traffic counts up Village Media file photo

Traffic levels on some Wellington North roads have nearly doubled over the last two years, council heard this week.

Councillors were fascinated by a report Monday on the 35 traffic counts conducted in May throughout the township to “provide objective information of vehicle volumes on roads during a 24 hour period” and “inform conversations.” 

Of the roads included in the report, Smith Street, east of Conestoga Street in Arthur saw the greatest increase in volume, jumping 74 per cent from 5746 in 2021 to 12,096 vehicles in 2023. 

Other streets saw their traffic volumes remain high but steady, like Main Street North which welcomes 10, 484 vehicles daily, a six per cent increase from the last traffic count. 

During the meeting, Coun. Lisa Hern shared that she believes the report was a “valuable exercise,” especially when measuring speed limits across the township. 

“When I went through (the report), I highlighted a few (roads) with speediness on them and it gets really noticed,” said Hern. “Going down some of those paved concession roads you see average speeds 15 or 20 km/h over the limit but on a gravel road, it’s 15 or 20 lower.” 

Hern specifically cited that she was surprised by Concession 6 N’s numbers, which welcomes almost 800 vehicles a day driving at an average speed of 93 km/hour, with 85 per cent of drivers sitting just below 110 km/h. 

Mayor Andy Lennox was also “astounded” by the degree of difference between some of the streets, including Main Street North and South in Mount Forest, and said that he “looks forward to future traffic counts.” 

“Another one that really stood out to me and I’ve had some recent feedback about it recently was Wellington Street in Mount Forest,” said Lennox. “It’d be interesting to get the numbers on Albert Street and compare the two because they do tend to serve a similar purpose bringing people from the east side (of town) towards Main Street.” 

In Arthur, local streets had an average speed of 37-45 km/hr, while the average speed on Smith Street was 52 km/hr with an 85 per cent of drivers ranging between 48 to 56 km/hr. 

Mount Forest saw a similar issue with speeds ranging between 47-66 km/hr on Main and Queen Streets while local streets saw an average of 35 to 44 km/hr. 

On rural roads, the average speed ranged between 40 and 93 km/hr, with 85 per cent driving between 54 and 108 km/hr. 

A summer traffic count will be conducted to support the 2023 Road Needs Study update, which will include Concession 4 N and other township roads as identified by the consultant and in coordination with township staff.

Isabel Buckmaster is the Local Journalism Initiative reporter for GuelphToday. LJI is a federally-funded program.

By Isabel Buckmaster, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter

Original Published on Jun 21, 2023 at 08:30

This item reprinted with permission from   Guelph, Ontario
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