About 1,000 trucks will be diverted daily from downtown Cambridge, Ont., once a ban is enforced in October. The province’s southwestern Region of Waterloo council approved a ban on Aug. 30.
“Our counts showed 1,600 trucks every day on downtown streets and with the diversion it should drop to about 600,” Mathieu Goetzke, Region of Waterloo’s commissioner of transportation services told TruckNews.com.
No heavy trucks will be allowed on the city’s: Water Street from Ainslie Street South to Coronation Boulevard/Dundas Street; Ainslie Street South from Concession Street to Water Street; Myers Road from Water Street to Franklin Boulevard; and Concession Street from Ainslie Street South to Dundas Street.
McQueen Shaver Boulevard will provide an effective alternative for existing truck movement on Ainslie, Water, and Concession Streets, the region said in a news release. Trucks will be allowed to make deliveries downtown.
Noise walls are proposed to be constructed along 1.5 km of McQueen Shaver Boulevard to mitigate the impacts of the increased truck traffic on nearby houses.
“This has been a long time in the works, with input from downtown business owners, residents, Cambridge City Council, and most recently Councilor Adam Cooper. Thank you to regional staff and my colleagues on Regional Council for taking the time to listen and gather information to make a decision that is best for the residents of Cambridge,” said Jan Liggett, Cambridge mayor. “I am pleased to see that residents will be getting a sound wall along the entire length of McQueen Shaver.”
The region’s officials consulted with the trucking industry during the study phase and will reach out again in September, Goetzke said.
Full enforcement begins Nov. 1
Signage will be installed Oct. 1 and Waterloo Regional Police Service (WRPS) will kick off proactive enforcement starting in mid-October. “We want to observe and offer information and don’t want to surprise anyone,” Goetzke said. Full enforcement will commence Nov. 1.
Police officers would utilize a combination of education and enforcement once the period of public information is complete and the diversion is implemented, a WRPS official said. “When circumstances dictate, a charge of Disobey Sign contrary to section 182(2) of the Highway Traffic Act would apply.”
According to the Ontario Court of Justice website, the fine for the offence is set at $85 and increases to $120 in a community safety zone.
Regional Councillor Pam Wolf told TruckNews.com that Cambridge residents and businesses have been asking for this for the past 50 years. “Without a bypass this has been impossible. Last night regional staff have come up with a solution which will have challenges for trucks, but now with McQueen Shaver and a noise wall it is a possible solution with which, we hope, most residents and truckers can live. The route will be reviewed in the spring,” Wolf said.
“The Region of Waterloo has finally taken a decisive step in banning trucks in the downtown of Cambridge,” added Regional Councillor Doug Craig. “This decision will amplify a much better pedestrian experience for people frequenting the downtown and help to invigorate and grow the business community.”
This story has been updated to include comment from the Waterloo Regional Police Service.
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