Resident raises safety concerns about South Lakeside intersection

Williams Lake South Lakeside Drive concerns after new developments.

Editor:

The traffic flow from South Lakeside to Highway 20 before the fire hall was built, and changes to the road were made, was already at a maximum for safety.

This is before the traffic light and road changes at the South Lakeside intersection. It worked like a four-way stop before the traffic light was installed.

From the light on South Lakeside Drive for the next 10th of a kilometre there are eight possible left-hand turns into businesses — only one has a left-turn signal.

All B-Trains, chip trucks, high-boys and flat deck trucks must stop on the roadway to wait for traffic to clear to make a left-hand turn, piling up traffic behind them.

The more traffic into the WalMart site will mean a longer wait time to turn left. Unworkable.

Trucks delivering steel to Beamac must stop traffic in both directions to allow the truck to enter and leave.

Traffic coming off of Highway 20 from out west to Canadian Tire or the Real Canadian Wholesale Club must cross three lanes of traffic, cutting everyone off from right to left.

From town, fuel tankers, high-boys, low-boys, etc., also cut off all traffic on three lanes from right to left going into the Real Canadian Wholesale Club or Canadian Tire. When snow covers all the painted lines because there is no proper alignment of road lanes this is a major traffic accident waiting to happen.

South Lakeside Drive was never designed to handle traffic from Pioneer development.

All traffic in and out of the Wal-Mart site was designed to go in and out at the four-way stop, and the curb and gutter is already in place to exit in and out below Pioneer office complex.

Building a road where it was originally designed to go into Wal-Mart and exit Wal-Mart site would give two ways into and out of South Lakeside Drive — a major safety factor. As well it would remove all traffic from South Lakeside Drive back to its original flow before Wal-Mart site opened.

Not to mention when Pioneer site is fully developed there will be three times more commercial traffic, plus 250 to 350 residential properties.

Plus, there is more undeveloped land, all inside city limits.

There is no way you can move that much more traffic through South Lakeside Drive, no matter how much money you spend, aside from a road out of Wal-Mart to Highway 20.

If in the future an upgrade was needed to South Lakeside Drive, traffic could be detoured to allow a more efficient construction at less cost.

I met with Coun. Surinderpal Rathor and Coun. Ivan Bonnell several times this summer to discuss and observe obvious problems at the intersection lights — observing and discussing traffic flow and safety issues in the event of an accident.

I also met with Mayor Kerry Cook at city hall several times — also Geoff Goodall (planning and operations manager). Mr. Goodall said he had no intention to even consider the original plan out of the Wal-Mart site.

All the changes and the money already spent on South Lakeside Drive has not made the road safer or faster. Money would have been better spent on the exit in the original design.

Also, the city has a new plan to spend more money on a road that cannot possibly handle more traffic than is using the road each day now.

I do not believe I am the only person using Highway 20 and South Lakeside Drive that is unhappy with this intersection.

If anyone else is unhappy with this intersection they should phone, fax or e-mail city hall at 250-392-2311 to let them know. If you have any question or comments please call me at 250-302-7967.

Peter Epp,

Williams Lake

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