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LETTER: City leaders sped away from safety concerns

Veterans Memorial Drive is 40 km/h and will stay that way after a recent decision at Stratford City Council.

StratfordToday received the following Letter to the Editor from reader Larry Baswick, after council decided to hold off on lowering speed limits.

Having written previously regarding speed limits within city limits, I am again prompted to do so by council's recent decision to leave present limits in place.

Using specious arguments like "people are already on my bumper when I do the limit" or "accidents happen at intersections so no need to slow down on straightaways" are frail and using space here to easily refute them is wasted.

Council is elected to make Stratford the best place in the world to live. They aren't there to solve problems for which other jurisdictions are mandated to find solutions or to ignore the wishes of the public. They are there to improve quality of life which includes a quiet, sane, comfortable environment.

The visual distraction of cars driving past your front window like its NASCAR or the interruptive noise of speeding tires on pavement or engines revving at speed or the anxiety of wondering if you (and animal life) will be able to make it across the road detract from quality of life.

Statistics will show people aren't dying because of accidents but, if there were any, would show that people are not happy with speeding cars despite the cherry picked evidence of one or two councillors.

If Kitchener can adopt a 40 km/h position, so can Stratford.

So, my solutions are, first, increased enforcement. There is no better rule adherent than visible police presence.

Second, zero tolerance. If 40 means 50 then 50 means 65 and, ultimately, disrespect for society at large.

Third, consistency. If our main arteries are 50, all ...all neighbourhood streets must be 40. It defies common sense to have Glendon Road the same as Ontario Street.

Next, any government employee found to be driving a government vehicle, or a driver of a delivery vehicle, over the speed limit is suspended from driving for increasing time spans and pays their own fine. We could start with city buses.

Last, 'Quality of Life' issues are at the top of every city council agenda.

Larry Baswick, Stratford