Brakes put on Byron Street reconstruction plan
Niagara-on-the-Lake town hall. (File photo)
There will be no reconstruction road work on Byron Street in the Old Town of Niagara-on-the-Lake, at least over the next year.
Last week the town’s council chamber was packed with members of St. Marks Church who opposed plans that included paving the shoulders of the road and adding curbs and gutters along the historic street.
The $600,000 project is currently on hold.
Delegates from the church and the Niagara-on-the-Lake Conservancy spoke against changes to the streetscape and also expressed opposition to the town’s plans to put in parking meters.
On Monday, councillors approved a motion by Coun. Betty Disero that there be no road reconstruction on Byron Street until a full review of the town’s policy on installation of curbs and gutters is completed.
Her motion also stated that the town’s director of operations, Sheldon Randall, include the Corporation of St. Marks Church in correspondence and requests for meetings regarding Byron Street.
“There have been a lot of studies on curbs and gutters, especially in the Old Town,” said Coun. Terry Flynn, “(but) we’ve heard loud and clear” from the church, businesses and residents about their concerns regarding Byron Street.
Coun. Jim Collard said St. Marks Church still needs to do some work on the sidewalk that it owns in front of the building. He also noted that council has approved installing parking meters on the street which will improve traffic flow and free up parking spaces.
“There needs to be a middle ground on this,” he said. “We need the revenue.”
“The municipality has responsibilities to the wider community,” Collard added.
Staff reported that there will be no funds allocated to reconstruction on Byron Street in the 2018 budget, but the installation of parking meters will be included in the proposed 2019 budget.
“We’re postponing something that needs to be redone,” said Coun. Paolo Miele, referring to paving of the street before meters are installed.
The two items in Disero’s motion regarding Byron Street were approved unanimously.