Business owner calls to remove barrier at Townsend Road

Mary Brooke came before the Land Use and Environment Committee to present improvements for Townsend at Sooke Roads

It may be the “dumbest intersection in Sooke” but it was approved and built by District of Sooke council in 2011.

Mary Brooke, a business owner in the Townsend Building, came before the Land Use and Environment Committee on June 17 to present a case for removing the barrier and restrictions for turning on Townsend Road at the Sooke Road intersection.

In outlining her reasons for changing the intersection access, Brooke said the barriers “erode the success of business.” She stated there were seven businesses who supported her call for change. Other concerns were for safety, although no accidents have been reported at this intersection. The crosswalk is only a few metres from the right turn lane off Townsend Road. It is unlit and residents have complained of the difficulty in seeing pedestrians in the crosswalk.

Members of the committee discussed removing the island, reinstating a left turn onto Townsend from Sooke Road and other issues surrounding the intersection.

Chair of the committee Councillor Kevin Pearson said it was indeed a “fairly difficult intersection” and “possibly the dumbest intersection in Sooke.”

Councillor Herb Haldane said there were problems with that intersection and he said he “didn’t remember them (staff) coming to us.” He said there was no public process. Councillor Maja Tait also stated she did not remember this coming before council.

In the November 14, 2011 minutes from the District of Sooke council meeting, it stated council unanimously agreed to award Jasmine’s Excavating the tender to alter the intersection for $41,949.60. Funding for the intersection upgrade came from ICBC. The LUEC passed a motion to have CAO Gord Howie contact and discuss the issue with the Ministry of Transport and ICBC.