APRIL 26, 2016 UPDATE: The new McKenzie interchange will be built as a partial cloverleaf reflecting the preferred option of 75% of those who participated in the public consultation, Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Todd Stone announced today.
You gave us a lot to consider during the first phase of McKenzie Interchange Project consultation last November-December. Now it’s time to look back… and move forward with a more detailed design and continued consultation with you.
The report summarizing the fall engagement process is now available on the website. You know what your priorities are; now this report gives us, and you, a clearer understanding how the collective whole – from commuters to commercial drivers, and transit users to cyclists and pedestrians – stands as we continue with the design process.
The summary report takes into account more than 1,100 comments and submissions from the public, as well as input provided from the public open house and meetings with First Nations, local governments and key stakeholders.
In no particular order, here are the top things to know about the consultation and design process up to this point:
You shared with us…
Of the three design options presented, the majority of people surveyed mentioned Option 2 (the one with the partial cloverleaf), followed by Option 1 and Option 3. Thank you so much for your input. We’re now going to use your feedback and suggestions, along with technical and financial information, to discuss with our engineers what needs to be done to further refine the interchange options before presenting our findings to you later this month (Feb 2016).
We’ll be holding a second open house on Wednesday, Feb 24, 2016, where we’ll present additional information on Options 1 and 2, and receive more feedback from you. We’ll cover:
- Details of roadways and structures, including traffic signals, using updated simulations to show traffic flow
- Locations for transit stops
- Pedestrian and cyclist movements for the Galloping Goose and crossings at both Highway 1 and McKenzie Avenue
- Potential property and environmental impacts (and ways to alleviate these)
If you can’t make it to the open house, don’t worry – we’ll post all materials on the project website that day, and we’ll be accepting feedback during this second phase of consultation via the online feedback form, by email, and by phone (250-387-8700) until March 18.
Your biggest concerns…
The McKenzie Interchange Project all started due to a need to relieve congestion, so it’s no surprise the most popular design consideration you mention in the questionnaire is travel time savings (90% say this rates on the very to extremely important end of the scale). Aside from that, 84% say increased safety ranks high, 71% are strongly for accommodating transit, and 66% rank improved cycling and pedestrian connections as very or extremely important.
Your common themes…
Certain themes are certainly on your mind; these kept popping up in your comments:
- The McKenzie/Burnside intersection
- Cuthbert Holmes Park
- Traffic flow
- Consideration of transit, cycling and pedestrians
- Preference for highway passing underneath McKenzie/Admirals
We’re working towards starting construction in the latter part of this year. We don’t want to make traffic flow worse before making it better, so during construction, our goal is to maintain existing travel times for commuters during peak periods.
Thank you for all your feedback so far. And please keep it coming during this upcoming second phase of consultation, starting with the February 24 open house. Knowing people’s key priorities for the project is enabling us to move forward with designing the interchange that you want.