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Town of Didsbury targets heavy vehicle traffic on 23rd St.

Heavy loads are constantly wearing down the granular segment of 23rd Street in Didsbury, causing severe washboarding and ruts

DIDSBURY - Council has given first reading to a proposed heavy vehicle truck route bylaw aimed at protecting a portion of 23rd Street in the town’s north end from damage and overuse.

Administration created the proposed bylaw specific to heavy vehicles which sets out the regulating of heavy vehicles on town roads.

The street is the main route used by vehicles accessing the Mountain View Regional Waste Management Commission landfill and the Alta Gas propane transfer site, council heard.

“Heavy loads are constantly wearing down the granular segment of 23rd Street, causing severe washboarding and ruts which impact residential and commuter users of the roadway,” said Ethan Gorner, the Town of Didsbury's chief administrative officer. “This (proposed bylaw) is a step to help regulate that and help move the heavy trucks through alternative routes.

“The current truck route was passed by Bylaw 2006-17 prior to the annexation, therefore a new bylaw is necessary to help reduce the strain on the intersection on 23rd Street and this segment of our road network.

The updated truck route would limit the number of heavy trucks to local users. 

Removing all Mountain View Regional Waste Management Commission commercial traffic and Alta Gas propane transfer site traffic would increase the longevity of any investment the town makes, and will ease the challenges faced at the intersection of Highway 582, he said.

Coun. Dorothy Moore said 23rd Street is not a truck route and should be protected.

“They (heavy truck traffic) should be paying us for using that road,” said Moore. “We can have load limits on roads just like anyone else can and I do think we need to do that because that road was never built for the kind of traffic, the heavy traffic, that it is getting right now. I like that we are finding a solution and I appreciate that.”

Coun. Bill Windsor questioned how enforcement of the bylaw would be possible, particularly during night-time hours.

“Who have we talked to about this?” said Windsor. “Have we talked to the waste commission? Have we talked to the county because they are going to be ticked. Have we talked to anybody outside our partners who are going to be impacted by this change? I don’t think it is going to be well received by our neighbours.”

Coun. John Baswick said the town should be in contact with the county about the proposed bylaw.

After giving the new bylaw first reading, council referred the bylaw to the policy and governance committee for review and recommendation back to council. 

As mayor Rhonda Hunter did not attend the July 12 council meeting, deputy mayor Curt Engel chairing the meeting.

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