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Council approves county roads improvement master plan

The RMAP report also issued community safety zones around areas in Wellington County dealing with speeding and traffic concerns
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County of Wellington Administration Centre. Keegan Kozolanka/GuelphToday file photo

COUNTY OF WELLINGTON - Council approved the county’s Road Master Action Plan (RMAP) report Thursday, which identifies $136 million in work over 20 years. 

At Thursday’s virtual meeting, county council approved the RMAP report following the county’s roads committee’s approval. The report provides a long-term plan for county roads and its transportation network improvements required to accommodate its growing population and employment over the next 20 years. 

Preliminary recommendations find seven road segments are expected to reach or exceed capacity limits in 20 years. 

One of the recommendations is improvements to Wellington Road 124 within five years at a cost of $15.8 million. These recommendations include adding roundabouts, road widening and centre left turn lanes.

The RMAP report also issued community safety zones around areas in Wellington County suffering from speeding and traffic concerns such as the following county roads:

  • Wellington Road 18 in Fergus, which stretches from Highway 6 to Orangeville Road
  • Wellington Road 123 in Palmerston, from Wellington Road 8 to Wellington Road 5
  • Wellington Road 11 in Drayton, which goes from Andrews Drive to Wellington Road 8
  • Wellington Road 7 in Elora and Salem, which goes from Ross Street to 1st Line
  • Wellington Road 24 in Hillsburgh, from Church Street to Jane Street
  • Wellington Road 46 in Aberfoyle, from Wellington Road 34 to Gilmour Road
  • Wellington Road 18 in Elora and Salem, which stretches from Wellington Road 21 to Chapel Street
  • Wellington Road 124 in Erin, which goes from Ross Street to Wellington Road 52
  • Wellington Road 6 in Mount Forest, which is along Highway 6 and London Road

“I’m very thankful that one of the stops in Centre Wellington that has been experiencing problems is now a community safety zone. Echoing Coun. Bridge’s statement that giving a measurement tool helps a great deal moving forward when our residents come forward with a complaint,” noted Coun. Mary Lloyd.

However, Coun. James Seeley wanted to workshop the wording in the RMAP report in order to include the socioeconomic factors when conducting road improvement studies. 

Seeley noted that Puslinch council had a discussion around the RMAP and concluded that the Aberfoyle road diet did not include socioeconomic components as part of its study. A correspondence from Puslinch council around the RMAP and the Brock Road crosswalk were included in the agenda for further discussion. 

“We had this discussion with Puslinch council along with the Aberfoyle road diet. Near the end of the report, what came surprising to us was that we’ve asked for this road diet report because we’re trying to make improvements to the livability of Aberfoyle. Well, the consultant mentioned that there were no socioeconomic components considered to the road diet,” said Seeley. 

County engineer Don Kudo explained that the vision and goals clearly speak to the quality of life of the residents being considered in the planning process for road designs and future work. 

Kudo noted that there were five different factors that staff used to evaluate the roads projects, and socioeconomic impacts were one of the factors used to evaluate the roads. 

“It’s a standard impact factor that would be used in future environmental assessments when you get down to detailed work and detailed planning designs for road projects,” said Kudo. 

However, several councillors still did not feel that staff really incorporated socioeconomic factors in the report.

Therefore, council deliberated and concluded that further discussion should be discussed among the roads committee. As such, Warden Kelly Linton instated a motion that council receive Puslinch council’s correspondence for information, and have the county roads committee discuss the rewording at a later date.