Pincourt tries making scenic road more pedestrian friendly

PINCOURT – It’s a road in the municipality of Pincourt, known for its waterfront view and now, officials there are taking steps to try and limit traffic on Duhamel Road.

Drivers have long taken advantage of the narrow road to get to and from Highway 20, but in an effort to reduce traffic there, the city has converted parts of the road into a one-way street, complete with a multipurpose path.

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The year-long pilot project, which began last Saturday, is welcome news for people like Steve Totten, who has been living on Duhamel Road for the past five years.

“We were anxiously awaiting this happening so it’s good news for us,” he said.

“We like the fact that you are mixing traffic with bikers. People walk. People like to promenade along the water and check it out.”

For Céline Loslier, the pilot project is a blessing for her pregnant daughter.

“I think it’s good for her to have a road like that to walk the baby,” she said.

Although area residents now have to go a few kilometres out of their way to reach home, Pincourt Director General Michel Perrier said he thinks it’s a sacrifice that is well worth it.

“I don’t see it as major constraint,” he said.

“A study, completed by Cima Plus – an engineering firm that specializes in transports – basically indicated to us that the longest detour that occurs to some of our citizens is about a minute-and-a-half.”

Instead of two-way traffic, the road will be restricted to one way heading north, in the direction of Highway 20.

“When we come home, we have to get used to going a kilometer out of our way but [it’s a] small little thing for such a nice change,” Totten said.

Some residents said they only hope pedestrians will be respectful of the new multipurpose path.

“I hope the people that walk their dogs will respect us and pick up their dog poop,” Loslier said.

The scenic route begins at Cardinal-Léger Boulevard and ends at Bellevue Park.

The speed limit will remain at 30/km per hour.

The city spent $50,000 for repairs and new signage for the multipurpose path.

If the project goes well, Pincourt will completely revamp the path.

“A successful program would be for us to see a constant flow of users on the infrastructure, mainly families,” Perrier said.

Pincourt could also see more one-way roads implemented in the near future.

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