London’s photo radar plan stalls — again
LONDON, ONT. -- Another delay will keep photo radar from London streets indefinitely.
The launch of a 180-day provincial review of automated speed enforcement (ASE) already operating in six Ontario cities has been delayed by the COVID-19 pandemic.
Until that review of policies, regulation, and implementation is complete, city engineers recommend delaying the installation of ASE in London.
“No date has been provided when the review will commence,” reads a report to the Civic Works Committee. “The review of the ASE program could result in changes that impact the viability of the program.”
“I am angry, and I am extremely disappointed in the provincial government on this issue,” says Councillor Shawn Lewis.
Councillor Lewis says the danger posed by speeding cars is the number one complaint he and his council colleagues receive from constituents.
“We have an indefinite delay, while the province considers the rules. But we (still) have a problem on the residential streets in our community,” adds Lewis.
Speedbumps, narrowed traffic lanes, and a lower speed limit has failed to slow cars in the community safety zone around the soon-to-open East Lions Community Centre and three schools.
CTV News spoke to several area residents who welcome photo radar.
“Even with the speed of traffic, kids are playing out there all the time,” worries Christina MacRae.
“When the Community Centre opens up, we’ll have even more traffic,” predicts Cheryl Chen.
In 2019, city council approved a 5-year contract for seven photo radar locations in community safety zones, according to rules laid out by the provincial government at the time.
Last March, however, council begrudgingly delayed installation to consider provincial changes to signage requirements.
The pending provincial review will eventually examine signage requirements, increased staffing costs for municipalities, and the impact of vandalism on cameras.
Preliminary data from the six municipalities that launched automated enforcement last fall indicates it is effective at lowering traffic speed.
And Councillor Lewis has no sympathy for the drivers creating the need for photo radar.
“If you don’t want to pay the ticket, the solution is simple— don’t speed.”
The Civic Works Committee will discuss the indefinite delay to photo radar at its March 30 meeting.