'It gets worse and worse': Speeding on Hoover Park in Stouffville spurs calls for traffic calming
July 13, 2021
There are few people who have lived on Hoover Park Drive in Stouffville longer than Dolores Kroupis. She moved to the east-west road 22 years ago with her family and says speeding has always been an issue on the road.
Kroupis was part of group a number of years ago that advocated and had the speed limits dropped on the road from 50 km/h to 40 km/h.
“Speeding has become a huge issue,” she said. “These wonderful neighbours of ours are locals that race down our street in excess of 70 km/h.”
When she first moved to the area, Kroupis went to the planning department and told them that the Hoover Park was too wide. “They never stated that it was going to become a bypass for the town,” she said.
When Kroupis voiced her concerns to Stouffville council last month, her words found receptive ears.
Ward 6 Coun. Sue Sherban agrees with Kroupis that Hoover Park was oversized at the time it was built. The number of people who whistle down roads like Hoover Park and Reeves Way at speeds over 80 km/h has increased in recent years, she said. “You see the increase of traffic and it's not good for the neighbourhood.”
Councillors were exploring the dictionary to impart just how bad the problem has become. “This speeding in our residential and rural area is a pandemic in itself,” Ward 5 Coun. Richard Bartley said, mentioning speed humps were needed in the cemetery.
Ward 4 Coun. Rick Upton went a step further. “This by far the No. 1 problem in this fine village and it's not just the No. 1 problem in Whitchurch-Stouffville; it's the biggest problem in every town in Canada.”
So what should council do about it? Ward 1 Coun. Ken Ferdinands suggested implementing mini-roundabouts that he says have been successful in Oakville. Ward 3 Coun. Hugo Kroon said it is a matter of better driver training. “Driver training in this province is a joke,” he said. “If you can stand up and breath you can get a driver’s licence.”
Upton suggested speed bumps or photo radar.
While no firm solutions were agreed to, council did direct staff to develop a traffic calming strategy and consider implementing those measures during the 2022 budget deliberations. Some of the traffic calming measures being considered include mini-roundabouts, automated speed enforcement, radar speed signs, bike lanes, increased signage, bump-outs, traffic delineators, medians and education.
“It reiterates the need for us to look at this more holistically throughout the urban areas and the rural areas as well,” Stouffville Mayor Iain Lovatt said.
Kroupis said the section of Hoover Park Drive from Byers Pond Way to Tenth Line is the longest stretch without a stop sign. While a strip was put in the centre of the road to slow down traffic, Kroupis said it does not work. She frequently sees cars that even choose to pass others on the road. It even becomes a challenge to back out of the driveway.
“I just want it addressed. I don’t want to wait for a kid to be killed before a decision is made,” she said. “As the population grow it gets worse and worse.”
Increased police enforcement would be nice, Kroupis said, but when she calls the police she is told they are inundated with speeding complaints from all over the municipality.
Speeding concerns are nothing new in the area. In 2019, residents on Reeves Way Blvd voiced their displeasure with the frequent speeding on their road as cars come off Ninth Line. “People come off Ninth Line and come too fast. Nobody is driving 40 km/h,” Nikki Parmer said at the time. “On Reeves Way, all of the families have children.”