July 14, 2015 - 8:00 PM
VERNON - Better, but not good enough is the message Vernon council sent to the Ministry of Transportation during a presentation about a new idea for improving the Stickle Road intersection.
Plans for a right-in, right-out only access to and from Stickle Road on Highway 97 just north of the city were scrapped in May after an outcry from residents and elected representatives. On Monday, a new design was introduced to Vernon council, but this one also failed to impress.
“I was frustrated because they come to us with a solution that yes is better, but it’s still a bad solution,” Coun. Brian Quiring says.
Local government officials and members of the public have been pushing for a traffic light at that location, but the Ministry of Transportation continues to dismiss the idea, saying it will cause more rear-end accidents and increase greenhouse gas emissions.
Currently on the table is a proposal to create a protected T-intersection which would allow lefthand turns from Stickle Road onto the highway south towards Vernon. Drivers headed north to the Silver Star RV Park would need go past it, and then backtrack by using a turnaround lane. Because there is no acceleration lane proceeding the turnaround, Quiring says the design would likely cause more rear-enders, particularly with large RVs attempting to pull back out onto the highway.
“It’s going to make the situation actually less safe,” Quiring says. “I challenged their design and they couldn’t defend it.”
A public input session is tentatively scheduled for July 30, and Coun. Catherine Lord expects the design team will hear the same feedback from residents as last time.
“I think they (ministry officials) are pretty adamant they don’t want a light there, and everyone else is adamant they do want a light there,” Lord says.
Council took issue with the open house being held on July 30, because it’s right before the August long weekend and could affect public attendance. The date may be rescheduled to accomodate their concerns.
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News from © InfoTel News Ltd, 2015