I attended the open house held in memorial Hall and reviewed the traffic calming study presented there by Bunt and associates, who claim to be professionals in this field.
I was very disappointed in the quality of their work which, in my opinion, fell well short of professional standards.
They had obviously not done any research into Harrison’s traffic patterns or even the basic traffic infrastructure, a very necessary first step in understanding the current traffic situation’s evolution and patterns of use.
The first glaring error I noted was that they had Hot Springs Road ending at the Plaza and this was shown as the main traffic artery in the village. How ridiculous to claim that the main flow of traffic in Harrison originates and ends at this plaza.
When I questioned them on this, they seemed not to realize that the provincial highway (Hwy 9) turns east on Lillooet and carries on through the village via Rockwell Drive. They seemed to be completely unaware of the volume and nature of the traffic passing through the village on this route and actually showed east Lillooet Avenue as a residential street!
Such nonsense remains nonsense, even when presented by ‘professionals’.
I asked them how they had incorporated Harrison’s existing traffic plans and street schedules into their study.
They hadn’t even bothered to look at these, even though these studies and plans form a part of the OCP and the long-term financial forecasts, budgets and infrastructure funding plans.
How can Bunt & Co. claim to have conducted a study when they refuse to recognise that Harrison actually has a traffic plan already in place, all legally adopted and approved, on which land-use and budget decisions are based.
Those existing traffic plans have clearly established the status of streets in Harrison (the street schedule) and their function in the traffic pattern.
You don’t need (or shouldn’t need) Vancouver consultants to help you understand something so basic, simple and fundamental as this in such a small village.
Residential streets carry traffic from that street only and are usually dead-ended like East Echo, East Naismith, Lakberg, Juniper Place etc.
Collector streets provide access to these, such as Miami River Drive, Balsam, Pine, Emerald, and Myng.
Connector streets (eg. Emerald, Alder, Pine) link the two arterial roads (Hot Springs Rd. and McCombs).
In the downtown area, they link Lillooet, Cedar and the Esplanade (eg. St Alice, Maple, Chehalis, Spruce).
The village’s single arterial street is the North-South Eagle-McCombs Drive-McPherson route.
This was built and paved and bridged with local and provincial funding to provide a type of perimeter road and also to serve as an alternate route to Hot Springs Road which can easily be closed by accidents, fires, trees, bridge problems etc.
It is designated as the official detour route in the emergency plans and must be kept open to all traffic, including trucks, low loaders and the industrial traffic heading up Harrison East Forest Service Road.
It seems pretty clear that the Bunt study was not really a study at all but a cynical attempt to justify the degrading of McCombs Drive from an arterial road to a residential street and support all the misguided obstacles and impediments placed on it by the current council.
As a taxpayer, I resent the wasting of my money on hiring such consultants to cover up the bungling in the management of my community.
I suppose you needed to throw good money after bad when you have wasted so much on the misguided installations on McCombs Drive which have driven traffic off this designated arterial route and into residential neighbourhoods, disturbing the quality of life for so many residents.