North Bay city council has approved dropping the speed limit along a portion of Pinewood Park Drive in the casino area from 70 kilometres an hour to 60 kilometres an hour. (Rocco Frangione MyNorthBayNow.com staff)
Traffic entering Pinewood Park Drive from Lakeshore Drive will face a speed reduction in the New Year.
Currently, the speed limit along Pinewood Park Drive is 70 kilometres an hour before ramping up to 80 kilometres a little south of Decaire Road.
But with the proposed casino going up in the Pinewood Park Drive-Decaire Road area, traffic is going to increase along Pinewood.
As a result, council is reducing the speed limit to 60 kilometres an hour on Pinewood from Lakeshore to 370 metres past Decaire Road.
After this point, the speed limit on Pinewood climbs to 80 kilometres for traffic heading to Callander.
Councillor Chris Mayne says anyone who is a frequent traveller on Pinewood has seen the volume of traffic increase in recent years as coffee shops and restaurants have sprung up along that corridor in addition to the existing hotel traffic.
Mayne says add the proposed casino to the mix and that means even more motor vehicles on Pinewood.
Mayne says the City’s traffic department “identified the area where they want to slow traffic down a little bit”.
Mayne says it’s anticipating what’s to come and to keep the roadway safe.
“It’s all about conditioning drivers to slow down a little bit as they get within the more built-up areas of the city,” Mayne said.
Councillor Bill Vrebosch supported the lower reduction and wanted it to go a step further.
Vrebosch notes that traffic coming into North Bay from Callander on Pinewood will be first travelling at 80 kilometres an hour and then will hit the new posted speed limit of 60 kilometres an hour as they approach Decaire.
Vrebosch believes the speed gap between both limits is too great.
To make the transition easier, Vrebosch suggested the speed limit on Pinewood on the Callander side go from 80 kilometres an hour to 70 kilometres an hour when drivers approach Cranberry Road and then it can fall to 60 kilometres an hour as they near Decaire and the new casino.
Mayne says it’s a good idea and city council may look at the suggestion in the New Year.
Part of Pinewood is also being reconstructed to create a left turning lane for people driving into the casino entrance.
The City’s Engineering staff say having a speed limit of 60 kilometres an hour on Decaire by the left turning lane into the casino also increases safety for all involved.