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Ditch plans for St. George’s Square and sidewalk plows

Two items recently reported in the Tribune are cause for concern at the thinking – or lack thereof – involved in city decisions and concern of spending money we do not have.
The first is the “reconfiguration of St. George’s Square” to a roundabout! Why? This is a totally unnecessary way to spend taxpayers’ money. Presently, pedestrians can safely walk across the intersection in any direction, traffic flows directly through and businesses are accessible.
The estimated $6.5 million for the square reconfiguration will escalate far beyond $6.5 million and does not reflect the total costs, including the effect on the downtown businesses.
Furthermore, pedestrians will be dodging vehicles, which never have to stop until there are several accidents, at which point traffic lights will have to be installed.
What is the source of that money? If there is ‘extra’ in a reserve fund, that extra comes from the taxpayers. We do not want their money spent on an unnecessary, disruptive change?
People will avoid downtown more than ever. What is needed is a large parking garage. Parking is the major problem still not being addressed.
The Trib’s second article concerns the terrible “service” of the sidewalk plows. They do make a disaster out of the sidewalks. Most sidewalks are cleared properly by owners, only to be filled in with lawns damaged by plows that are too wide for most sidewalks.
The city does not mow the boulevard lawns in summer – it is the owner’s job – so why should they plow in front of our homes in winter? That too should be the homeowner’s responsibility. It is time to reinstate a bylaw requiring residents to be responsible.
Anne Holman
Guelph

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