Installation of speed bumps in Halifax neighbourhood divides residents

A Halifax-area neighbourhood is going to look a bit different come winter.

Drivers in the Kingswood subdivision will be forced to slow down for newly installed speedbumps.

But not everyone in Kingswood is happy with the decision to install six speedbumps on Kingswood Drive over the coming weeks.

“Does it have to be speedbumps? Or are there other traffic calming measures which might be more appropriate for the locations, such as three way stops, stop signs, that kind of thing?” said Aileen McGinty, a Kingswood Drive resident.

McGinty created a petition to in an effort to have council look at other options to address speeding in her neighbourhood.

So far, more than 200 residents have signed it, including Andrea Phinney.

“There’s a big school in the middle — an elementary school — so if emergency vehicles of any type need to get in and out of there in a hurry, installing a series of six or seven speed humps is going to impact them and their response times,” Phinney said.

What frustrates some in this area the most is the lack of consultation.

Halifax Regional Coun. Matt Whitman says the city doesn’t need to consult and he says speedbumps are working well on other roads in the area.

“We put up speed radars for two months,” Whitman said. “About 85 per cent of people speed on Kingswood Drive, some of them are doing over 100 km/h and in a 50 km/h zone with kids playing, so it’s that serious of a concern that they’re needed. Staff is following council’s direction and is doing exactly what they’re supposed to do.”

The results from that report in 2017 show that out of nearly 58,000 vehicle trips on Kingswood Drive from Sept. 9 to Oct. 8, only 23 per cent of vehicles respected the speed limit.

The second month of the study brought similar results, with a mere 27 per cent obeying the law.

“I see so many people going too fast on this road,” said Kingswood Drive resident Fred Bowdridge. “There’s a lot of kids, there’s a lot of pets, also there’s a lot of bikers and walkers, so I think it’s a welcomed safety feature.”

And, while not all residents have the same feeling towards the speedbumps, those opposing them say they’ll continue to petition council to look at a variety of traffic calming options.

Work is expected to begin on Kingswood Drive as early as this week and is expected to wrap up in November.

With files from CTV Atlantic’s Suzette Belliveau.