Some residents annoyed over drive test training on their streets
Published Thursday, October 17, 2019 4:13PM EDT
KITCHENER – Karen Blencowe has been living in a Kitchener neighbourhood for more than a decade.
But since Kitchener's DriveTest location opened at nearby Ottawa and Lackner, she's faced with almost a daily annoyance.
"There's been many times I've gone to come down the street to go into my driveway and it's actually blocked because somebody has been taught how to parallel park and are using my driveway," she explains.
"They're blocking it so I can't even get in or out."
She's not alone: other residents in her neighbourhood have complained to the province about the frequency that learning drivers use their streets.
Dave Schnider is the councillor for the area. He says that DriveTest uses seven different routes and randomizes them to avoid using the same streets constantly.
But it's not just DriveTest using those routes: driving instructors will often bring their students to the test areas to practice before their test.
"Going through side streets, you notice them a lot at four-way stops," says one area resident. "They might sit a little bit longer."
But other people living nearby say they don't mind it, because they, too, have been in the driver's seat.
The province has launched a review of test routes on Wednesday after receiving a number of complaints.
"DriveTest and the ministry have undertaken significant measures to reduce the volume of road testing in sensitive residential areas by increasing the number of test routes to lessen the intensity of testing on any one route," says Bob Nichols with the Ministry of Transportation in a statement.
Schnider says another idea could be to have the three-point-turn test in a sectioned-off area within the DriveTest parking lot.
"Maybe they can have nine or 10 routes to try and space it out a little bit, but it's a balancing act between the needs of the DriveTest centre and getting a new driver tested," he says.
The city hasn't considered a bylaw, but Schnider says they could look into it.