To the Editor:
Compliments to the Weyburn Review for the excellent editorial on Jan. 23, entitled, “Safety of the public is paramount”.
For over 10 years we have written letters to your paper and city council on the necessity of sidewalks being clear and safe for pedestrians. Sidewalks were not made to be used only six months of the year, but must be safe for school children and all pedestrians year round.
I wonder if Mayor Button noticed when she was in Ottawa if the snow from the streets was placed at the curb beside the sidewalks. In fact, in all of Ontario, every city, town and village, large and small, puts the snow beside the curb and clears the sidewalks as well.
Just having returned from Gatineau, Que., the same procedure is followed. We don’t know about all of Alberta, but Edmonton and Calgary also place the snow from the streets at the curb, and residents are expected to clear their sidewalks. Regina and Saskatoon basically have the same policy.
Weyburn city council seems to think that the debris from the streets must be piled on the sidewalks to keep the streets wide enough for vehicle traffic. I beg their pardon! Obviously this excuse is invalid.
These cities just mentioned have tens of thousands more vehicles than little Weyburn. All it takes is caution, consideration and a bit of defensive driving.
Let the streets be used for their purpose and the sidewalks for theirs. Again, let us stress there would be no additional cost to the city to place the snow at the curb. What is needed is more goodwill on the part of the city.
We have pleaded long enough, now it’s time for action. Next winter, if the city continues the practice of piling debris on the sidewalks, we will go to the city police and lay a charge against the city for violating its own bylaw.
If this fails, we will go to the broader media to make known the plight of the citizens of Weyburn. Hopefully we don’t have to go this far, but as the editorial stated, the safety of children (and may we add, seniors and all residents) is of paramount importance.
We haven’t even mentioned that we are supposed to be a “City in motion”.
Think it over, city council. A new policy is needed.
Claire and Ed Kuhn,