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‘Worst roads’ on MLA’s radar

A local politician insists there is a need to address realities and perceptions about five North Okanagan roads being labelled the worst in B.C.

In the B.C. Automobile Association’s Worst Roads survey, participants put Silver Star Road in first place, while sections of Westside Road were second, fourth and ninth. Cosens Bay Road placed third.

“I will be talking to the transportation minister this week about the issue,” said Eric Foster, Vernon-Monashee MLA.

Except for a small portion of Cosens Bay Road, all of the roads are in the electoral areas and fall under the jurisdiction of the Ministry of Transportation.

Foster will also have discussions with the MLAs who represent some of the roads — Greg Kyllo in Shuswap and Christy Clark in Westside-Kelowna.

While Foster says there is a need to continue with surface upgrades to North Okanagan roads, there are some challenges.

“There are pressures across the province and a limited budget,” he said.

“We try and keep all roads up to a certain standard for safety.”

Mike Macnabb, BX-Silver Star director, isn’t sure the BAA survey actually helps move road improvements along.

“I understand folks are upset about problems but we’re keeping pressure on the ministry,” he said of ongoing lobbying from the Regional District of North Okanagan.

Macnabb questions how the survey is compiled and believes votes may be based on an emotional response more than actual knowledge of road conditions.

“Everyone could nominate every road in B.C. as the worst so it makes no sense,” he said.

“What makes it the worst, the width, the pavement? You have to look at it analytically.”

 

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