Wellington County council approves traffic lights for three intersections

WELLINGTON COUNTY – Traffic signals will be installed at three intersections deemed among the county’s most dangerous.

Wellington County has budgeted for roundabouts at the intersections of Wellington Roads 18 and 26 (southeast of Belwood), set for 2023, and Wellington Roads 7 and 12 (at Parker), set for 2028.

Staff estimate the three intersections can be equipped with temporary signal systems for $350,000 exclusive of HST.

The county has also budgeted for a roundabout at the intersection of Wellington Roads 8 and 9 between Drayton and Palmerston, known locally as “the S-Bends, with construction planned for 2025.

However, this intersection borders on Perth County (Perth Road 140 and Perth Line 91), which has not budgeted for a roundabout.

Wellington County performed studies on the three intersections in September 2020.

The studies show the warrant for signalization was met at Wellington Roads 18 and 26 and at Wellington Roads 7 and 12.

However, the S-bend intersection, Wellington Roads 8 and 9, only partially met the warrant.

At the Nov. 10 Wellington County Roads committee meeting, the committee approved a recommendation to proceed with the trial of temporary traffic signals at all three intersections.

The recommendation was approved by county council on Nov. 26.

Perth County council previously approved the installation of temporary traffic signals at the S-bend intersection on Nov. 19.

“These intersections all have a history of some unfortunate accidents,” said councillor Andy Lennox, chair of the Wellington County’s roads committee.

Councillor Earl Campbell said the proposed intersection improvements are “long overdue and I fully support those initiatives.”

Councillor Steve O’Neil thanked staff for coming up with the traffic light plan “to help mitigate tragic consequences.”

“I’m very happy to see that we are doing something in the interim, before the roundabouts are put in place, because those roundabouts are some years down the road,” stated councillor Gregg Davidson.

He noted the Parker intersection “has the most crashes and the most fatalities over the last number of years” and “having the traffic signal lights there is very important at this point in time.

“A two-way stop is not working anymore – in fact it hasn’t worked.”

Councillor George Bridge said it will be good to see how the traffic lights work out at the Parker and S-bend intersections, adding that roundabouts at Teviotdale and on Wellington Road 123 outside of Harriston have greatly improved safety in those areas.

“It’s a good expenditure of our money to make sure our roads are as safe as possible,” said Bridge.

Warden Kelly Linton thanked the roads committee and the engineering department “for putting together these solutions to address some very real community concerns.”