by Ashley Janes
A private meeting has been scheduled for Nov. 18 to discuss the future of the Cardiff Corner intersection. MLA Maureen Kubinec, the Minister of Transportation, Honourable Ric McIver, Mayor Lisa Holmes, Sturgeon County Mayor Tom Flynn, and Deputy Mayor Gord Putnam will all be in attendance. Shortly after Council’s Swearing In Ceremony on Oct. 29, Kubinec said that she had spoken with McIver who agreed that a meeting should be set to discuss further development of the intersection in order to make it safer. When asked about the meeting, Kubinec said that she was optimistic they would make progress.
Flynn also made it clear that his priority going into the meeting was safety. “I will be working to find solutions to make this a safe intersection. My second concern is about working toward the interchange in the long range.” Holmes had nothing further to add, but emphasized that the Town would release a public update as soon as any new developments were made.
Press Secretary for McIver, Parker Hogan, made a statement on the Minister’s behalf. He explained that there are a number of variables considered when the province makes decisions regarding the three year construction plan. Traffic volume, condition of existing infrastructure, economic activity in the region, safety records of infrastructure, and available funding were some of the variables on that list. “At this point we don’t have the funding to move forward and we still are waiting on one little piece of property that we have to deal with,” he said, admitting that there were no new updates regarding the acquisition of that unattained property.
Hogan stressed that, in the meantime, Morinville residents should take care to drive safely on the highway and through the intersection. “We can build highways, or roadways or intersections or interchanges to the safest standards that engineering can provide, but we also need drivers to take safety into their own hands, to drive the speed limit, to obey the rules, to not take unnecessary risks.”
According to Michal Pylko, Construction Manager for Alberta Transportation, the intersection had been reviewed back in 2011 in order to develop options and determine the best solution for growing local traffic. The solution they came up with was a full interchange at an estimated cost of $45 million. More recently, Alberta Transportation has been exploring options for temporary intersection improvements to address safety concerns.
“Several options have been developed and are being reviewed. Once the review is finalized, it will be shared with all stakeholders,” said Pylko. “Although some options have a potential impact on the 100th Street intersection, a roundabout is not being considered in advance of the main Highway 2/Cardiff Road project.”