By JULIE BERTRAND
Stettler residents are asked to contribute their opinion on how the realignment of Highway 56 should proceed in an open house scheduled for the first week of March.
The Delcan company submitted the six final options for the realignment of Highway 56 north of town of Stettler, down from the original 11 that were developed earlier, during the regular meeting of Stettler town council on Tuesday, Feb 15.
Delcan asked for the council’s feedback to prepare for the Highway 56 Open House.
“None of the options are great,” bluntly said Melissa Robbins, director of operational services.
At a previous meeting involving representatives of the town, the county,
Alberta Transport and Delcan aimed at narrowing down the options and considering modifications, the town had expressed a few comments about the proposed realignments.
Council felt it was important to keep the existing highway entrance through 46 Street viable.
Ring Road should have an access that is easily accessible and should require very little backtracking, according to the consensus within the council. Councilors also believe that options should be available to put intersections about every 400 meters on the new alignment, to provide for the town’s future growth.
After carefully examining the final six options, the council felt that almost none of the town’s initial concerns had been taken into consideration when reviewing and modifying options to present to the public.
“Option 11 is the best, although there is still a concern with access to 52 Avenue. It would be possible to allow another access more or less 400 meters west of 46 Street on Hwy 56,“ said Robbins.
Option 11 would have a roundabout intersection to replace the existing intersection of Highway 56, 55 Avenue and 42 Street.
Highway 56 would remain on its current alignment north of the town and along 55 Avenue to the west and the roundabout would provide a replacement for the current right angle turn. The highway alignment would continue along 55 Avenue and eventually connect to 57 Street. The roundabout could also act as a gateway feature between the town and county of Stettler.
Council decided in the end to listen to what the residents think about the options.
The open house that will allow residents to express their views and concerns on the available options for the realignment will be at the rec centre on Thursday, March 3 from 5 to 9 p.m.