Speed bumps coming for local road despite city staff objections

BUMPY ROAD AHEAD: Three speed bumps are planned for Tweedsmuir Ave.
BUMPY RIDE AHEAD: Three speed bumps are planned for Tweedsmuir Avenue.

Three new speed bumps will soon be forcing the many drivers who cut through Forest Hill’s Tweedsmuir Avenue to slow down, despite a city staff report recommending otherwise.

Residents of the one-block street, who have long requested the bumps, can also look forward to a wider sidewalk along the shared driveway used by the two recently constructed 29-storey apartment buildings at 310 and 320 Tweedsmuir Ave., says Ward 21 Councillor Joe Mihevc, who amended city staff’s original anti-speed bump recommendation during a Toronto and East York Community Council meeting on April 5.

“Speed bumps are a proven way of slowing down traffic,” Mihevc says. “Yes, they’re a pain in the neck, but they save lives. They reduce the average speed by about eight kilometres, and the high-enders — the people going 60, 70, kilometres an hour — will stop doing so.”

As for why the residents of Tweedsmuir, which lies west of Spadina Road between Heath Street and St. Clair Avenue West, almost didn’t see any new speed bumps, Mihevc says the city’s bylaws governing them require every resident along a given street to be polled for their opinion, with a minimum percentage supporting the bumps for their installation to be approved.

With the residents from two 29-storey buildings included in the poll, there were never going to be enough favourable responses for the bumps’ installation to be automatically approved, he says, which is why the number he cared about was the percentage in favour among those who did respond — and their opinion was loud and clear.

Between the Holy Rosary Catholic School at 308 Tweedsmuir Ave., its neighbouring Holy Rosary Church, and the number of seniors who have moved into the new apartment buildings, Mihevc says it was obvious that enough vulnerable residents were living and walking along Tweedsmuir for their safety to be a legitimate concern.

“A significant number of residents were noting that a lot of people who try to cut through the neighbourhood ramp up their speed on Tweedsmuir,” he says. “So it’s something that the community wants, and given that the community wants it, I support it as well.”

Though he isn’t sure how much the work will cost or when it will begin, Mihevc says he hopes the project will be underway in the next year, depending on how quickly the city can submit its contract for tender.