New four-way stop to solve traffic issues at Keith and Kenney

Crews installing lines, rumble strips, signs and a flashing light at the intersection today.

A four-way stop is being installed at the corner of Keith Ave. and Kenney St. today as part of the city’s Transportation Master Plan completed earlier this year.

“In this plan, the intersection of Kenney Street and Keith Avenue was identified as a high collision area with long wait times for Keith Avenue through traffic,” the city stated in a press release.

Crews’ work schedule today includes the instalation of rumble strips and flashing red lights for added safety.

“Once bags have been removed from the signs the intersection will be considered active as a four-way stop,” continued the city.

At city council’s May 1 meeting, McElhanney’s senior transportation engineer Glenn Stanker presented the concept in his master plan report.

The plan was a little more than a year and a half in the making, which began as an initiative to anticipate a large increase in the population of up to 50 per cent over the next decade, boosting the city’s population from 12,000 to 18,000 due to new mines in the area, the expected LNG projects and the industrial area at the airport, said Stanker.

“Irrespective when this growth happens, what we’ve done with this plan is show how the city can address stresses on the transportation in the city due to growth whenever it happens,” he said.

In developing the strategy, Stanker said he looked at historic plans over the past 10-15 years, and intiated comprehensive community engagement with an open house and meetings with stakeholder groups, user groups and agencies, in addition to a “very-well-received” online survey.

That information helped project future traffic trends, he added.

The scope of the study was expanded by almost 50 per cent thanks to increased financing from ICBC, so trends could be identified as well as the top 20 intersections with collision histories worth noting, said Stanker.

One of the top items on the to-do list for the short-term – in the next five years – was the addition of a four-way stop at Keith and Kenney, which is a “no brainer,” said Stanker.

“It needs to happen, it’s warranted and has a collision history that supports it as well,” he said.

Another priority item is the widening of Lanfear hill.

The city has already completed one of McElhanney’s short-term goals to reduce Lakelse Ave. in the downtown area from four lanes to three, with one lane each way and a shared turning lane.

Still remaining on the short-term to-do list are Lanfear Drive widening, Kalum St. lane diet, a vehicle overpass at Kalum Lake Road and a pedestrian overpass at the east end of the CN Yard.

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