Grain elevator traffic study approved by county council June 17

G3’s terminal will see substantial changes made to Hwy. #2A intersection

A proposed grain terminal’s traffic plan got a green light from Alberta Transportation during the County of Wetaskiwin’s Planning and Development meeting July 17.

G3 Canada’s area structure plan, presented to council in addition to a public hearing June 8, had a missing piece added: G3’s traffic plan for the important intersection of Hwy. #2A and Sec. Hwy. #460. During the June public hearing for the ASP, where two readings were passed, the traffic plan was still on Alberta Transportation’s desk in Edmonton. Councilors finally got to see it July 17.

Assistant CAO Jeff Chipley and Director of Planning and Development David Blades presented the item to council, the document only showing up at the county office that day. Blades stated several concerns were raised at the public hearing. “Both parties really worked hard to make sure they addressed concerns,” said Blades.

Blades stated Hwy. #2A will have good bypass lanes plus spacing between the highway and railway; he noted the railway issue dogs Hwy. #2A.

Chipley noted the outcoming traffic heading onto Hwy. #2A now has a 30 meter stacking area.

Councilor Josh Bishop asked if foot traffic through the area in question was taken into account.

Chipley said Alberta Transportation didn’t have a concern with foot traffic.

Reeve Kathy Rooyakkers stated developers should not have to worry about pedestrians on a highway.

However, councilor Terry Van de Kraats stated he felt there should be “Watch for pedestrians” signs placed around that intersection.

It was also stated at the meeting that G3 has committed to some upgrading Sec. Hwy. #460.

Rooyakkers asked if this traffic report becomes part of the ASP, to which Chipley responded yes.

Van de Kraats asked if it was possible for internal roads at the grain terminal to handle most of the stacking or traffic waiting to enter or leave the facility. “My concern is that we could have some stacking on the (public) roads,” said Van de Kraats.

Blades mentioned the terminal has a lengthy internal road, perhaps 150 meters in length.

Councilor Bill Krahn noted there is enough room on the internal road for 14 trucks. Both Krahn and Van de Kraats pointed out grain isn’t hauled only during harvest. ‘And breakdowns happen,” said Krahn.

Rooyakkers asked if concerns from the City of Wetaskiwin were addressed in the traffic study. Chipley stated that concerns such as drainage, the airport, pedestrians and access all seem to have been addressed.

The G3 grain terminal ASP passed third reading by council’s vote. Councilor Van de Kraats didn’t vote because he was not at the public hearing in June.

Stu.salkeld@pipestoneflyer.ca

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