The staff thinks they have found a cost-effective option to improving the safety of the Franktown Road/Coleman Street intersection with little down time.
In his report to the physical environment committee at its Feb. 2 meeting, director of public works, Dave Young, said alternative options have been explored and he believes a thermoplastic product, Traffic Patterns XD, made by Ennis-Flint, could be a great solution.
He played a two-minute video demonstrating the product, which Ennis-Flint said is a durable, pre-formed aggregate-reinforced formula designed to give a “higher level of performance over a longer period of time.”
The material can be easily positioned, heated and stamped into existing asphalt, making it ideal for crosswalks, medians and roundabouts. The video indicated it is wheelchair and cyclist-friendly and can withstand extreme wear and tear, such as snowplow use. It also comes in a variety of patterns and colours.
“We’ve been looking into it and it does seem favourable,” Young acknowledged. “A representative has given me a number of examples throughout Ontario and there’s one in York Region, a rapid transit area, which sees 50,000 vehicles a day, has been in place for a number of years. It’s been very successful there.”
“The Tanger Outlets (in Kanata) is all done with this stuff,” added Coun. Brian Doucett.
Staff were forced to seek alternatives when costing for the reconstruction of the intersection came in from Cavanagh Construction and was found to be over budget ($60,000 had been earmarked for the project) and would create significant delays. This was discussed back at the Jan. 5 physical environment committee meeting.
“...This is due to the fact that in order to incorporate interlock crosswalks, a concrete base is required,” Young stated in his report. “In order to pour the bases, maintain traffic, allow proper curing time and then place interlock brick, the job would take over a month and cost in excess of $90,000.”
Young said this type of work should only be undertaken with a complete reconstruction and a search for other options led them to thermoplastic overlays. The minimal impact on traffic to apply Traffic Patterns XD is an attractive factor, he said. “We’re able to do half a lane of installation in 90 minutes...,” he noted.
It’s also less expensive than the $90,000 estimate from Cavanagh. “...I wouldn’t say it’s inexpensive,” commented Young. “We’re still looking in excess of $30,000 to do that intersection, but time is such a big factor, to be able to have that intersection done.”
“...It’s something definitely worth pursuing,” he continued. “We’re (staff) pursuing getting a detailed pricing on this type of installation.”