Stickle light is needed

Resident blasts the Ministry of Transportation's process

In the ongoing dispute between the public majority of sticklers, who support a traffic light at Stickle Road and Highway 97, and the Ministry Of Transportation, a government body paid for by the sticklers and your tax dollars, it amazes me that the continuing battle even exists.

It seems as if the ministry is not willing to give the general, motoring and knowledgeable public any credit whatsoever for their wants, needs and intelligence in this matter, and because the ministry feels it has the endless power and money to keep doing this, it will keep beating us until it gets its way with the help of ridiculously weak positions from local politicians.

In The Morning Star story, ‘Stickle Road plan before public’, you can read it all between the lines. Firstly, the opening line, “Provincial officials hope it’s third time lucky with Stickle Road.” What does this tell us? That they are unwilling to listen to reason and good common sense?

Next, “two previous plans were shot down by residents and businesses.” Are you enjoying this lack of respect you are being dished out with your own tax dollars? They are using your money to pay for all of this. Now enter Eric Foster. Once again, he is proving to the people who elected him that he is with you, as long as you are with the government.

His statements, “It’s a good compromise,” “I’m hopeful people will be in favour of it.” Yep, thanks Mr. Foster.

The North Okanagan Naturalist Club is against the plan due to the extended 20th Street proposal going right through protected, wetlands.

The next line from Mr. Foster in the story, “The engineering people at the city and the Ministry Of Transportation have come up with a solution that takes care of the safety issues and business concerns. They want to get it right.” See anything mentioned about the naturalists’ concerns here?  Nope.

The one that turns my guts the most is, according to Foster, “The fact that a third plan is being put forward means the public is being listened to.” Seriously? They are working us, not listening to us. I guess the ministry keeps coming back because even though they claim to be listening to the public, they are not actually hearing anything.

This isn’t just about Stickle Road but that whole corridor. A well designed and programmed traffic light configuration at such an intersection will also help create breaks in traffic flow, assisting others wanting to enter the highway at Meadowlark and Elmwood roads as well as Stickle. I venture to say that even the congestion in front of Vernon Square mall might see a little relief here and there.

In April on two separate occasions on a midweek afternoon around 3 p.m., I had to wait for no less then seven minutes for a break in the traffic to enter the highway from Meadowlark. A light down the highway would have created a break much needed at that time.

This has gone on long enough. A traffic light at Stickle and Highway 97 is the perfect solution here. The distances are great, the visibility is great, the logic is great and the benefits will be great.

Please attend the open house Thursday from 4 to 8 p.m. at the Prestige Hotel.

Let’s fill the ballroom and see if the Ministry will actually hear what it is listening to.

Rory Ian White