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Letter: Traffic calming isn't working on Spring Street in Port Moody

We fear now that a young person's life will be taken through driver criminal negligence along the danger zone of Spring Street, writes Port Moody resident Sharon Cooper in a letter to the editor.
Spring Street in Port Moody in 2021, before the traffic calming was installed by the city.

The Editor:

In 2019, we began contacting the City of Port Moody about the ever-growing traffic diverting onto Spring Street during evening rush hour.

Whenever traffic is backed up on the Barnet Highway exiting onto Clark Road and St. Johns Street, cars take a shortcut around the corner of Douglas onto the Spring Street cycle route and race off east.

As volunteer gardeners at St. John the Apostle Church, we have noticed that teens taking a break from their after-school youth group in the hall would come out to pass a puck, Frisbee or ball around on Spring Street.

It became apparent they were entering "the danger zone" — just trying to get a little exercise and fresh air.

We also noticed that Moody's Landing has a wonderful upper courtyard for young kids to enjoy, but teen residents — nicely giving the younger ones space — like to play hockey at the foot of their stairs on Spring. They also chase each other down and fly out into Spring to play tag.

Another terribly dangerous zone is the western sidewalk at Queens.

Kids fly down on the sidewalk on scooters and skateboards knowing they have a stop sign right of way while mothers pushing strollers down to the Queen's Street Plaza often wave at pals already there — perhaps naive of dangerous Spring Street driving habits and expecting cars heading east to stop at the stop sign. There have been near-deadly misses for innocent babes in buggies.

As well, students walking or cycling east home along the "quieter" Spring Street cycle route from Port Moody Secondary or west from Moody Middle or commuting home from the Barnet cycle route must also contend with dangerous drivers.

PoMo police have spent a few hours ticketing a few cars, but they are overwhelmed with other traffic problems in the evening rush hour. Policing is hit or miss because it all depends on traffic issues for the day. Some weeks, cars hit Spring Street five days in a row; other weeks, one or two or rarely none. PoMo police cannot be there every weekday.

It took two years to finally get Port Moody to traffic calm Spring Street and, although the city has put in a first attempt at traffic calming, it is not working: The traffic restriction signage at Elgin and Spring and other traffic signage along Spring is slowly being sabotaged.

As well, no matter how often we push this orange traffic barrier back into its original position, someone pushes it aside.

Having recently moved into the Sophia Living complex and walking Spring daily, we can sadly see a senseless death occurring.

We fear now that a young person's life will be taken through driver negligence along the danger zone of Spring, where speed limits are just suggestion and traffic calming is ignored.

- Sharon Cooper and R.L. Read, Port Moody