City opts to add signage along contested Ormsby Road
Residents in west Edmonton’s Ormsby Road area say they are feeling relieved that the city is finally addressing some of their concerns about traffic along the contested street.
The city has decided to erect “Local Traffic Only” signs in the area to discourage cut-throughs.
Homeowners along the road have been asking the city to help curb traffic in their neighbourhood for more than two years – ever since the province scrapped plans to build a flyover connecting 69th Avenue to the Anthony Henday, says resident Ian Corry.
"Probably since about 2010, we started noticing that our road was becoming quite unlivable," said Corry, who’s lived in the area for 25 years.
"Whoever cancelled that didn't think of the repercussions, traffic-wise, on our neighbourhood street," he said.
This past weekend, an SUV speeding through the neighbourhood slammed into a neighbour’s garage.
Corry’s house narrowly avoided similar damage earlier this summer when a stolen truck plowed into his front yard.
"Unfortunately things like that have had to happen to get the attention that we believe this deserves," Corry said.
He has suggested the city build a traffic island at the intersection of 69th Avenue and 188th Street to divert traffic out of the neighborhood.
City hall meeting
At the transportation committee meeting held on Monday, city officials said they plan to review all of the residents’ proposals, but noted that any significant intersection changes would likely be expensive and depend on budget priorities.
Before any major traffic changes can be made, they say all surrounding communities would have to be consulted – a process that could take up to two years.
In the meantime, the city hopes the new signs will help correct the problem.
"[The new signs] aren't regulatory and they can't be enforced, but they send a reminder to motorists in the area that this is a local area where local traffic is meant to be," said Craig Walbaum, the city’s director of transportation engineering.
While it’s not the traffic islands he hopes for, Corry is relieved the city is finally addressing the traffic issue.
"Even if we get rid of one or two [cars] out of ten, it's a start."
The City said the new signs should be up in the Ormsby area by the end of October.
With files from CBC's Silvana Benolich