Need for sidewalks on Highway 7 a priority for Perth residents

Brian Burns and Shannon Baillon
Perth’s Director of Community Services Shannon Baillon, right, shown with town treasurer Brian Burns, is pleased with the response to a recent survey on active transportation. Photo credit: Chris Must.
Posted on: May 8, 2019

The need for sidewalks and lower speed limits on highway 7 are priorities identified by Perth residents in a recent survey conducted by town staff, who are in the process of developing an active transportation plan for the town.

At a meeting of Perth town council’s Committee of the Whole Tuesday, May 7, Director of Community Services Shannon Baillon said she was very pleased with the results of the survey, which attracted 225 responses.

“You’d never get that many at a public meeting,” said Baillon. “To me it shows the importance of this.”

Many of the comments received concerned Highway 7 and the need to make the major east-west artery more pedestrian-friendly.

Mayor John Fenik commented that during the recent election campaign he had heard many comments about the need to slow down traffic on the highway and to install sidewalks. Currently, he said, pedestrians “have to run across Highway 7 because it’s such a fast zone.”

The mayor noted that other communities located on Highway 7, such as Havelock, have posted lower speed limits as the highway goes through town.

Baillon said the survey comments also indicate that for Perth residents “walking is just as important as cycling” when it comes to active transportation, with people voicing opinions on where sidewalks and pedestrian crossings are needed.

A draft active transportation plan will be presented to the public for further input before being finalized, Baillon told council.

Article by Chris Must