Editor, The Times:
The article in the Nov. 29 issue of Clearwater Times titled ‘Ministry to test roundabout design for over-sized loads’ clearly shows how all the citizens of Clearwater, including the mayor, city council and editor of this newspaper have been misled.
In the article Louise Yako, president and CEO of the B.C. Trucking Association, said representatives of the trucking association met with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure on Nov. 20 to talk about the roundabout and said that more room may have to be created to accommodate bigger loads. She also said that the largest loads only travel in the early morning hours, but all traffic would have to be stopped at the roundabout in any case.
She also said “We found out about the roundabout in a round-about way in this case, which was not usual.” The above was paraphrased.
The following are direct quotes from this newspaper and are not meant to point fingers at anyone in particular, just to show how we all have been misled.
On page 1 of the Aug. 27 issue Keith McNeill reports, “Ministry engineers have assured the District that the roundabout would be designed to accommodate all possible vehicle combinations, including extraordinary loads.”
On page A4 of the same issue, “We are assured that the proposed design will be adequate for the largest and longest vehicles using the highway today, plus some extra.”
On page 1 of the Sept. 13 issue Clearwater council member Ken Kjenstad was quoted, “Kjenstad said the provincial truckers association told him their members would have no problem negotiating a roundabout as proposed”.
On page A3 of the Sept. 20 issue an article from the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure and Ministry of Environment, “The Yellowhead Highway 5 is a major north-south route linking British Columbia with Alberta. Because of this, the roundabout will be able to accommodate the large commercial vehicles, including wide loads, that use the Yellowhead corridor.”
On page 1 of the Sept. 27 issue in an article by Keith McNeill, “Members of Council believed that nothing would happen with the roundabout proposal for five to eight years and were surprised as anyone when the provincial government announced it was going ahead, councillors said.”
On page A7 of the same issue Keith McNeill reports, “The animation from Ourston Roundabout Engineering shows a variety of vehicles, including large trucks, negotiating the roundabout without apparent difficulty.” It also states, “Ourston Roundabout Engineering describes itself as North America’s pre-eminent roundabout design team, with experience dating back to 1990.”
Again, this is not to point fingers at anyone, just to show how we have all been misled to believe it was all just tickety-boo from the start.
There is supposed to be another public meeting in Clearwater in the near future. Notice of this meeting should highly publicized, well in advance, at a time that is convenient to the general public, with enough room to accommodate all who want to attend.
I would like to encourage Jim Lamberton to renew his input and insight on this matter.