by Colin Smith
Council has approved the installation of streetlights along Highway 642 from East Boundary Road to the Morinville Leisure Centre at a revised cost of $160,000.
The project had previously been approved at a cost of $110,000.
The initial cost estimate provided by a consultant was based on the assumption that double-davit streetlights could be used to illuminate both Highway 642 and the trail alongside it.
This plan was subsequently deemed unfeasible because the trail is set back too far from the highway, so single standards will be used. The additional $50,000 in funding will allow completion of the street lighting along Highway 642. A separate project in the 2020 budget will place lights along the trail in the same area.
The funds for the lighting will come from the Safety Initiative Reserve funded with photo radar revenue. The balance in the reserve at the end of 2019 was $183,418.
The lighting of the trail to the MLC will be completed as part of another capital project.
“I think it’s so important that we light that road,” said Councillor Lawrence Giffin, in support of the motion to approve the project. “We have the money. It needs to be done. Let’s get it done.”
Councillor Stephen Dafoe noted, “Going to a number of hockey games, it is incredibly dark [there at the entrance] in the evening. Having those lights…ultimately on the trail, is great.”