Councillor says City created emergency situation by mishandling southwest construction schedules
Construction at the intersection of 14th Street and 90th Avenue SW has prompted the Easter weekend closure of 14th Street between Southland Drive and Heritage Drive
Ward 11 councillor Jeromy Farkas says the City dropped the ball with its scheduling of the closure of a section of 14th Street Southwest while other construction projects with lane closures continued in the area.
“I really question the need of having to do all these projects all at once, especially in an uncoordinated way,” Farkas told CTV on Friday. “What I’m going to be doing is bringing an urgent notice of motion to city council at our next meeting basically saying that if this area needs to be closed, under no circumstances should there be work going on the other two or three ways in and out of the neighbourhood.”
Farkas says his regular 15 minute commute to his home in Palliser took hours on Thursday following the closure of 14th Street Southwest between Heritage Drive and Southland Drive.
“What should have been a relatively routine closure just turned into absolute traffic chaos. It wasn’t just an inconvenience but, I would say, it’s an emergency situation. All down 90th Avenue everything was at a complete standstill.”
In addition to the ongoing construction along 14th Street, projects are underway along Anderson Road, Southland Drive, 90th Avenue and 24th Street.
According to Farkas, Calgarians expressed their concerns regarding the closure well ahead of the traffic disruption. “A lot of residents in the community had actually raised this with city council and committee and said that ‘With this bus project, does it make sense to have it all going on at the same time with the ring road construction and all that?’. Sadly it really just fell on deaf ears.”
In addition to addressing the scheduling of closures, Farkas is calling for improved signage warning of future traffic disruptions and better communication with emergency services regarding access.
The 14th Street closure is scheduled to remain in place through the weekend.