UPGRADING INFRASTRUCTURE

Roads and Sidewalks

We need to reduce incidents of speeding. One way to do this is with the new in-ground crosswalk signs aimed to slow down drivers in school zones.

We want effective and efficient solutions today, for the safety of tomorrow’s generations.

Traffic changes in these areas:

  1. Cole Harbour Road and Bisset Road
  2. #107 Highway and Ross Road

Solution: Update road signage and install traffic lights at the Cole Harbour Road and Bisset Road and at the #107 Highway and Ross Road intersections.

Traffic changes in these areas:

  1. Cole Harbour Road and Caldwell Road
  2. #107 Highway and Forest Hill Parkway

Solution: Redirect traffic coming onto Cole Harbour Road and Caldwell Road, and around the #107 Highway and Forest Hill Parkway.

Investigate the potential to have roundabouts built in each of these areas.

In addition, reroute traffic into Cole Harbour by building a new extension through the Mount Hope Avenue interchange.

On December 20, 2012, CBC News published an article entitled, Cole Harbour development on hold until traffic fixed. The article described how in 2012, the HRM traffic committee members and planners believed Portland Street was unable to support another increase in traffic if further housing developments were supported. As such a 1,300 housing unit planned on Portland Street was not approved. The traffic planners then suggested the “long-term” traffic solution for the area was to build an extension at Mount Hope Avenue and Highway 111. This solution would have seen traffic move off Portland Street and subsequently away from break heart hill as it leads up to Caldwell Road intersection.

The Federal Government and senior military officials decided to hold on to the Shearwater lands. The same lands on which the proposed four-lane connector was suggested to run southwest of Russell and Morris Lakes. Further negotiations for a two-lane road since then have gone nowhere. Councilor Nicoll suggested regional public pressure was needed to persuade the federal government to change their minds. Fast forward to 2020, and we are not any further ahead to solving this traffic problem.  We need other solutions.

No matter how you look at it, the population of HRM is expanding outwards. The effect of this population expansion on District 4 means that we will likely see the development of our lands within and outside our current District 4 boundary lines. 

District 4 has been relatively untouched during the last decade with the building of new homes and/or apartment buildings. Saying this, large, multi unit buildings would cause further traffic bottlenecks on Portland Street and at the Caldwell Road intersection. More signage and traffic lights are needed in this area. We will work together to make this happen. 

What we need are more routes in and out of District 4. This will be done by working collaboratively with other councilors and other orders of government to find solutions to our traffic problems. The Mount Hope traffic interchange is a great place to continue the conversation.

Looking forward, more electric vehicles will be coming onto the automotive market in the coming decade.  We will require long term planning solutions for these forthcoming changes to transportation, energy use and the environment.  Keeping this in mind, I want to ensure the decisions made at city council are reflective of the changes we will need tomorrow.


Land Use Planning

NS Rehab lands need to stay in public hands.

Nova Scotia Utility and Review Board (URAB) will be coming up for renewal in 2021, and we must have a strong voice at the table.


Public Buildings

Our Cole Harbour Public Library is a cultural hub. The library systems in HRM offer immeasurable resources at our fingertips. Collectively we need to ensure these centres of public learning are supported.

During my career as a CAF member, I was required to leave HRM and live in other cities across Canada.

It was through my many postings that I discovered not all libraries were the same from coast to coast.

After leaving Halifax, I was sorely disappointed with the limited programming and libraries located elsewhere.

Our HRM library system spoiled me. I took it for granted that all municipal library systems were created the same. They are not.

Let me tell you now that we have a great library system. We need to continue to support the work these municipal employees do daily to help us explore the world from an armchair.  We need to get the message out about all the fantastic services they offer Cole Harbour/Westphal residents for free.


Waste Management

COVID-19 left HRM with a $85.4 million budget shortfall. 

The result was that we’ve seen our weekly Green Bin waste pickup reduced to bimonthly this summer.

Despite its smelly annoyance it saved our municipality $1.1million.

This is one small example of fiscal accountability city council made because of COVID-19, and I anticipate there will be more such decisions as a result of the pandemic.