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County pursues speed reduction in Water Valley

Water Valley Community Association asks to lower speed limit on Highway 579

MOUNTAIN VIEW COUNTY - County council has passed a motion instructing administration to work with Alberta Transportation to formally pursue a speed limit reduction from 50 kilometres per hour (km/h) to 30 km/h on a stretch of roadway running through Water Valley.

The move came by way of motion at the recent regularly scheduled council meeting and followed a request for the change from Water Valley Community Association.

The request is to reduce the speed limit on Highway 579 in the unincorporated community from approximately Range Road 52 to the subdivision of Westward Height, a stretch of approximately one kilometre.

In a letter received by council, association president Laine Fowler said an Aug. 8 community meeting called to discuss the possible change received unanimous approval from participants for safety reasons.

“On this portion of the road we have several road entrance/exit points as well as a ball diamond, horse arena, pump track and children’s playground in the near vicinity,” Fowler said. 

“We have several businesses and our community hall on this stretch of the road, which means we have many pedestrians that cross at various points. We are seeing our community grow and therefore additional traffic, sometimes quite heavy traffic, in this very short distance.”

In a second letter, Julie Cole, with Water Valley Saloon, said, “We have had a number of close calls just out front of the saloon along with a few minor collisions but I feel this problem has the potential to become much worse.”

During council discussion of the matter, deputy reeve Greg Harris said he regularly uses the road involved and believes reducing speeds at the site would be prudent. 

“It’s a place that needs to have an enforceable speed lower than 50 kilometres per hour,” said Harris, whose division includes Water Valley.

Coun. Peggy Johnson said, “I certainly support this. I think this is a good move.”

The motion passed unanimously.

Dan Singleton

About the Author: Dan Singleton

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