MORRISBURG – South Dundas councillors voted to support the resolution put forth by Prescott Mayor Brett Todd to expand Highway 401 from four lanes to six between Trenton and Cornwall.
Since May 2017, there have been 12 fatal crashes, resulting in 16 deaths and 18 injuries on that stretch of highway. The resolution put forth by Todd, and supported by South Stormont councillors, contends that collisions result in prolonged closures and create dangerous conditions on secondary roads not designed for heavy traffic volumes.
Councillor Bill Ewing, meanwhile, doesn’t believe an expansion is a realistic ask of the province.
“Just putting a six road lane in, we’re not doing anything. We’re just beating our head against the wall, because we’ll never see it happen. They need to do something with the attitude of the drivers,” he said. “What they need to do, in the short term, they need to slow the traffic down. And if they have to put pace cars out there on the highway, put them out there… When they’re snowplowing out here now, vehicles run at 60-kilometres-per-hour. You don’t have many accidents behind them… it sounds crazy, but it could work.”
Council voted to support the resolution, and it was suggested by Mayor Evonne Delegarde that Ewing present his additional resolution to Todd.
The province has openly stated that, “at this time, the [transportation] ministry does not have plans to widen Highway 401 through this area.”
The joint resolution will also be sent to Associated Municipalities of Ontario, Rural Ontario Municipal Association and MPPs representing Eastern Ontario.
South Dundas council voted to adopt the 2017 accessibility plan as presented. Work is ongoing to meet accessibility requirements while some projects require upgrades due to changing building codes.
Targets for next year include installing barrier free washrooms in Matilda Hall and work at the Morrisburg Arena to install automatic doors, rebuild the north-west ramp and relocate a barrier free door. The local BIA will also construct accessible washrooms for public use.
All rinks open
Ben Macpherson, director of recreation and facilities, reported that all outdoor rinks have volunteers in place and will once again be fully operational. Dundela rink was the only location without someone in place, but a volunteer stepped forward late last week. There are five outdoor ice rinks in South Dundas. They are located in: Morrisburg, Iroquois, Dundela, Williamsburg, and Riverside Heights.