The City of Nanaimo will undertake upgrades to the Jingle Pot and Westwood intersection in 2019. The upgrade will convert the intersection from a two-way stop to a controlled traffic signal, in addition to pedestrian and cycling improvements.
Jingle Pot Road & Westwood Road Project FAQs
Q1: Why was the intersection selected for a traffic signal?
A1: The intersection of Jingle Pot Road and Westwood Road is a junction of major roads. This intersection has seen a steady increase in traffic and a signal would be an appropriate way to manage pedestrian, cyclists, and vehicle movements.
Q2: Why was a traffic circle not considered?
A2: Traffic circles are used for traffic calming purposes on residential streets. For more information, the city has a page that outlines the differences between traffic circles vs. roundabouts here.
Q3: Why was a roundabout not considered?
A3: A roundabout design was originally explored for the Jingle Pot Rd & Westwood Road intersection, but after further analysis, it was ruled out early in the conceptual planning stages. Roundabouts have a number of benefits; however, depending on the context, they are not always the best fit. The reasons why this particular intersection did not result in a roundabout design was due to:
- The topography of the area.
- The skewed geometry of the intersection.
- The land acquisition and appropriation required.
- The construction and acquisition costs.
Q4: Why were pedestrian islands included within the design?
A4: On major roads we have to take into consideration the turning movements of buses and large service vehicles. These vehicles take wider turns than cars and therefore, require larger curb radii. To avoid building larger-than-needed intersections with long crossing distances for pedestrians, pedestrian refuge islands are introduced to help tighten up the intersection. In the case of Jingle Pot Road and Westwood Road, the skewed nature of the intersection made introducing 2 islands on the acute angles a necessity. To improve safety further, the City opted to include ‘smart channel right-turn lane’ geometry within the intersection design. Together, with ICBC, a road safety audit was completed to evaluate and analyze the final design. The City took the recommendations from this review to further improve the intersection.
Q5: Why do the sidewalks and bike lanes end?
A5: Project limits are a reality of scope and budget. Through the design process, City staff aims to achieve as many project objectives as possible within the funding available. Eventual improvements to the approach roads will be considered as funding, need, and prioritization allows.