Home     Publications     Artwork     News     Links     About



When a government gives one of their policies a name like "traffic calming" you know pretty much right away that there's something smelly going on. What this actually means is "traffic enraging" not calming. It might be called "neighbourhood calming" but only because even folks who live in the 'hood have trouble actually getting home now, so it's quieter.

I have more than one issue with the Mare's ongoing program of installing "traffic calming" measures all over the city. My own neighbourhood has been infested by quite a few of them over the past 20 years, and I have seen no benefit or improvement from them. What I do see is the ongoing and huge cost of installing and maintaining all of them, money that would be much better spent on useful things like social housing or free public transit.

Take, for example, the "traffic calming" circle smack dab in the middle of the intersection at Haro and Broughton, installed a few years ago. I estimated that it cost at least $100,000.00, although there were on average 1 or 2 guys working while 5 or 6 guys stood around watching them work, and the backhoe operator sat there smoking all day waiting for his 5 or 10 minutes of work to occur, and the dumptruck driver was at Tim Horton's for donuts. This should probably be rounded up to $150,000.00 on general principles.

Hey stupid, put the water line in first.

The circle above is at Haro and Jervis. Once the crews finally finished building the circle in all its glory (notice the lowered taffic signs to reduce the number of pedestrians run over by drivers who can't see what is in the intersection because of this crap) and went away, the city waterworks crew came by soon afterwards and completely demolished half of it, seen on the left. Then, after doing their work and refilling the hole, the first crew came back and built it again! Incredible, this stupid little thing probably cost over $250,000.00, and for what? Wait, instead, let's put in little round towers for people to live in and call it roadway housing. You heard it here first. This prime building site already has services at its doorstep! Just steps to Robson Street!

Now look at the entire city. How many of these circles have been installed? 100, 200 ... ? How many more are planned? Also, don't forget about complete and permanent street closures like Robson Street between Hornby and Howe (are you kidding me?), Bute at Davie, Broughton Street west of Nelson, or partial blockages like Barclay Street at Thurlowe, or the absolutely retarded "curb extensions" at places like Thurlowe and Davie. The former probably $200,000.00, the latter perhaps only $20,000.00 each. Take a wild guess and estimate how much all of this "calming" has cost us. I'd guess at least $40 to $50 million has been pissed away to date. That doesn't calm me down at all. How many people would that house or feed? Why are we building curb extensions when people are starving? At least the Mare isn't wasting money on filling potholes in our neighbourhood any more (or in other nay-bourhoods where he isn't very popular either).

The stupid and needless curb extensions cause their own problems. Stand at the corner of Thurlowe and Davie and watch for a while to see how they screw up traffic. If a car turns left or right onto Davie, they can no longer get out of the way of the two driving lanes. As a result everything grinds to a halt while the would-be turners wait for all the pedestrians to meander through the cross-walk, while traffic piles up behind them. I've seen traffic backed up to Nelson as a result of these curb extensions. There is no reason for this, so thanks again for nothing as usual, Mare.

Home     Copyright 2017