DAWSON CREEK, B.C. – A Dawson Creek councillor brought forward two motions regarding road safety to council on Monday that were voted against.
Councillor Gregg Apolonio proposed a feasibility study on a crosswalk near NLC and the possibility of installing a four-way stop on 15th Street and 115th Avenue.
Apolonio said he spoke with a resident who raised concerns about the intersection near Tremblay Elementary School. It was then proposed that staff assess the intersection and that a four-way stop be installed at the crossing to reduce the risk of speeding vehicles. This motion was defeated.
According to Dawson Creek mayor Darcy Dober, a primary concern is the amount of time that staff would have to spend assessing the intersection.
“We already have a lean team…We’ve had requests for stop signs in the past, mostly for lights. It’s peoples’ concerns, so we want to take them in, but we’re not professionals in directing traffic flow,” said Dober.
Kevin Henderson, chief administrative officer, indicated that there could be other options, such as speed bumps, but these would pose an issue in the winter months.
“It sounds like there is concern about speed, so there’s a belief that the stop sign will reduce the speed. However, the school is on the east side of the property, so I’m not sure it will have the desired effect. Stop signs are meant to regulate movement, not speed,” declared Henderson.
Several students of Northern Lights College also raised concerns about the crossing at 8th Street near campus — many of which cross the busy motorway daily, said Apolonio. This led to the proposal of a flashing crosswalk that could improve the safety of pedestrians.
Students also mentioned the benefits of a crosswalk as the new Dawson Creek Hospital progresses, saying it would ensure the safety of construction workers and, eventually, residents on their way to and from the hospital, said Apolonio.
Mayor and council defeated the motion, with Dober saying 8th Street is provincially run, and even if the city did put forward a motion, they can’t do anything about it.
“We have to be careful about how much work we put our staff into doing because, if you look at that area, there’s a lit crosswalk at the Safeway corner that was just installed, one at the next main intersection, and a crosswalk in the middle. Seeing what’s already there, I personally wouldn’t see the province going for another one,” mentioned Dober.
Council passed a new motion directing staff to write a letter to B.C.’s Ministry of Transportation to see if anything can be done regarding the crosswalk near the NLC.