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Survey results show Fergus residents want change on St. David Street

More than half of respondents to a public survey preferred an option with new features when St. David Street gets reconstructed in 2023
Keegan Kozolanka/GuelphToday file photo

FERGUS – Results from public consultation on the reconstruction of St. David Street in Fergus shows a majority of respondents want some sort of change but could not reach a consensus on what that might be. 

The Township of Centre Wellington undertook a survey in March and April that asked residents their preferred re-imagining of St. David Street. 

The road is scheduled for a full reconstruction in 2023 with staff taking the opportunity to seek resident input on if they desire changes including wider sidewalks, streetscape visual improvements, bike lanes and a reduction in parking spots. 

A report to Centre Wellington’s committee of the whole says there was over 750 responses to the online survey and through email with 95 per cent of those who live in Fergus, the area or regularly use St. David Street.

Of the four options presented, an exact replacement of the existing St. David Street was the most commonly preferred option with around 41 per cent. 

However, that leaves 59 per cent preferring other options. 

Ten per cent chose option two, which would remove on street parking lanes and increase the boulevard and sidewalk width and include new tree plantings and decorative light features.

More than a quarter preferred option three, which maintains on-street parking from St. Andrew to St. Patrick Street with the same improvements noted in option two. 

Those wanting separated bike lanes chose option four, which accounted for 15 per cent of respondents.

The report says respondents main priorities with this project were to maximize on-street parking, improve the visual appeal of the streetscape and to improve sidewalks and walkability.

A high-level cost estimate shows option one to be the lowest cost option, estimated at $3.9 million. The option with bike lanes had the highest estimate at $4 million.

This report is for information purposes and staff are proposing to report back in June with a recommended concept.