LETTER: Mahon Avenue can't handle traffic diversion

Dear Editor:

Re: Safe Mobility Strategy a Welcome Lane Change for Pedestrians and Cyclists, July 8 Viewpoint.

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Kudos on this progressive and thoughtful strategy to enhance community safety and well-being. Unfortunately, the current reality is two steps back versus one forward. I’m referring to the City of North Vancouver’s ongoing closure of Chesterfield Avenue, and diversion of its traffic to Mahon Avenue.

We understand the need to accommodate construction, but it’s a bizarre choice to divert a high-volume artery to a residential street when neighbouring Jones or Lonsdale avenues are far more capable of handling such; and unacceptable to do so with zero notice or consultation.

At the same time as CNV touts “safer streets” and encourages residents to walk or cycle, it moved [a high volume of] vehicles to a street not designed for anywhere near this volume, creating multiple accidents and many more close calls.

Public health officials are telling us to spend time outside, yet we fear walking with our toddler.

City staff have been repeatedly asked to implement temporary mitigation options such as speed enforcement or reductions, truck diversions, traffic calming or stop signs. Instead, they doubled down and installed more detour signs on Chesterfield.

The icing on the cake is how the same developers profiting from this project send their construction vehicles the wrong way across our roundabouts, since apparently buses and trucks are incapable of navigating these.

We’ve been assured this diversion will end by July 31, but have yet to meet an infrastructure project that adheres to timelines, and would appreciate immediate action in the meantime.

We would also like engagement for long-term solutions – since many drivers now transiting our street will do so again when Chesterfield jams, as it often does at rush hour, and more frequently upon completion of this and other developments CNV council recently approved there.

Ryan Benson and Sarah Campbell
Mahon Avenue resident

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