Busy Hamilton intersection adds ‘left-turn calming project’

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Published October 5, 2022 at 2:12 pm

Drivers turning left from Queenston to Nash. (City of Hamilton)

Motorists turning left at a major Stoney Creek intersection will encounter “speed humps,” as part of a City of Hamilton pilot project.

The city calls the pilot, which is being installed at the intersection of Queenston and Nash roads, a “Left-Turn Calming” project. The speed humps within the intersection are attempted to reduce the risk of left-turn collisions at traffic signals.

Over the last five years, more than one-quarter of collisions where a driver’s car struck a pedestrian came when the driver was making a left turn. The city says a similar endeavour in Washington, D.C., reduced conflicts by 70 per cent and led to drivers making their left turns with 10 per cent less speed.

“The purpose of these small infrastructure additions is to ‘harden’ the centerline and encourage drivers to approach the crosswalk at a wider angle instead of cutting across intersections diagonally. This results in slower turning speeds and better visibility of pedestrians.”

A 15-second video, filmed from a point of view directly above the intersection, shows how drivers are supposed to move through the intersection.

Hamilton has had 18 traffic deaths since Jan. 1 of this year. That is, with 12½ weeks left in 2022, already a 50-per-cent increase over the 2021 total — which in itself was a 10-year high.

The city has made a number of road safety reforms in the last few months. Those have included converting Main St. to two-way traffic between Longwood Rd. in the west end and the intersection with King St. in the east end, as well as forbidding right turns on red lights at several intersections along Main.

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