Stickle Road plans driving ahead

Vernon-Monashee’s MLA is adamant that plans for a dangerous intersection are proceeding

Vernon-Monashee’s MLA is adamant that plans for a dangerous intersection are proceeding despite significant opposition.

The Ministry of Transportation has developed a T intersection to improve safety at Stickle Road and Highway 97 although the City of Vernon, residents and businesses have demanded a traffic signal.

“The traffic engineers say a light won’t help there,” said MLA Eric Foster.

“I don’t think a traffic light there will be supported (by the ministry).”

The new proposal calls for a protected T intersection to allow for left turns from Stickle Road on to the highway towards Vernon.

There would be a separate left turn with turn-around access for the Silver Star RV Park area and the ministry would eliminate highway cross-movements and left-hand turns from the RV park.

There would also be new acceleration lanes leaving Stickle Road and existing deceleration lanes entering Stickle Road from the highway would be lengthened.

“It definitely answers the concerns of left-hand turns off Stickle Road (to Vernon),” said Foster.

“It answers the safety issue.”

On Monday, Vernon council members unanimously spoke against the ministry’s proposal, saying that a traffic signal is the preferred option to allow motorists to access the highway.

The ministry insists a signal would negatively impact safety and result in delays and traffic queues.

“The issue of a traffic light is about traffic flow and thousands of cars go through there every day,” said Foster.

The new proposal will go before the Regional District of North Okanagan board July 22 and  the Ministry of Transportation will hold a public open house July 29 from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Prestige Hotel.

The ministry proposal for Stickle Road can be viewed at www.vernon.ca/transportation.

Comments can be e-mailed to eng@vernon.ca and they will be forwarded to the ministry.