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Calgary councillors pan city on action against dangerous intersections

After several pedestrian-vehicle collisions councillors are asking the city for possible immediate action

Coun. Andre Chabot.

Metro File Photo

Coun. Andre Chabot.

Calgary councillors had pedestrian safety on their minds after a driver hit a pedestrian in Erin Woods, taking the life of that teenager last week.

"People are dying in the streets," said Druh Farrell in a phone interview last week.

Question period spurred concern from Couns. Andre Chabot and Ray Jones on what action could be taken at the intersection and others to prevent tragedy in the future.

"I spent about an hour there recently and saw first hand how many children reside in the area as well as how many vehicles travel on this road," said Chabot. "Are there any measures we can take immediately to minimize the risk of any future events?"

Chabot said he was given information about the Erin Woods Boulevard and Erin Woods Place intersection from the city with data on collisions in the area for both car and pedestrian traffic.

"I was also informed that following a pedestrian injury in February that a collision review was conducted," said Chabot. "The review indicated that no clear trends could be identified at the intersection along this corridor."

In direct response to the tragic incident in Erin Woods the city will be launching the "Look out for each other," campaign – an awareness campaign for pedestrians and motorists – as well as the "eye slows" program which gives drivers an indication of how fast they are going.

Jones chimed in adding every ward has "problem" intersections.

"I had one about a month ago where on 56 Street and Temple Drive two people were hit in an intersection," Jones said.

He asked administration if trees are cut down for visibility and whether rectangular rapid flash beacons could be installed. Administration said the traffic calming lights are installed based on a determined "warrant" and the listed intersections weren't high on that list.

"I guess the list is just too long," said Jones.  

Coun. Druh Farrell spoke about pedestrian safety during budget discussions and said more needs to be done to address the problem in the capital budget.

"I'm looking forward to more work in this area," said Farrell. "Until we get to vision zero we haven't done enough."

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