Someone, somewhere, must have a logical explanation as to why it would be better to route U.S.-bound traffic down Mowat Avenue instead of Central Avenue, as is currently the case.
It clearly must be more logical than having U.S. traffic—particularly on those summer weekends when the line-up stretches to McDonald’s—inching through town in the right-hand lane of King’s Highway/Third Street West to Central Avenue, where they make that gentle right turn and head directly towards the bridge.
Local traffic, meanwhile, can zip along in the left-hand lane unimpeded.
Evidently, it’s more logical to make said U.S. traffic have to merge into the one lane that crosses the intersection at Central before it widens into two again on Second Street East—creating a bottleneck that now impedes local traffic from zipping on by.
And evidently, it’s more logical to send our American visitors—already frustrated by the long wait in traffic—an extra block east and then an extra block west (not to mention having to sit at the lights at two intersections along the way) to get to the same point as had they simply been allowed to continue down Central Avenue.
Oh, did anyone mention the extra traffic congestion that’s sure to deter local residents from shopping at Green’s and Pharmasave, visiting the Fine Line Art Gallery, or heading to the ATMs at the CIBC, TD, and Northern Lights Credit Union.
Oh, and that Scott Street and First Street East would now be dead ends?
All together now: Huh?
Look, those involved with trying to revitalize the downtown core deserve kudos for their efforts. But closing Central Avenue and having U.S.-bound traffic head down Mowat instead, as is called for in Phase 2 of the plan, borders on ludicrous.
A public meeting on the Downtown Core report is scheduled for Tuesday, June 13 at 7 p.m. at the Civic Centre. No doubt the logical explanation will be given then.