Delta council has given the go-ahead to start improvements along the 72nd Avenue corridor.
On Monday night, civic politicians approved the start of work on the project.
The city’s engineering department has been planning a series of upgrades for 72nd Avenue, which sees up to 28,000 vehicles daily.
A report to council notes ICBC completed a safety audit of the 72nd Avenue roadway improvement project, from the BNSF overpass to 120th Street, and have made recommendations to enhance the proposed design.
To address the safety audit recommendations, Delta staff recommend including a narrow median island along 72nd Avenue to restrict turning movements from driveways and side streets. Staff recommend including signalized U-turns at Westview Drive and 116th Street to improve access for property owners that front onto 72nd Avenue.
Staff also recommend signalized U-turns at two additional intersections, which would involve property impacts, at 112th Street and at Nicholson Road.
The engineering department notes the westbound queue on the avenue typically extends back to 115th Street during a typical morning rush hour.
With the addition of an extra westbound travel lane, the queue is expected to decrease by 50 per cent.
Meanwhile, on-street parking along 72 Avenue would be restricted from 6 a.m. to 7 p.m.
Driveway safety improvements would be offered for properties fronting the avenue to allow vehicles to turnaround on their property, while sight lines would be reviewed at each driveway.
Costing $4.5 million, the first phase of the project will commence later in 2020 from the BNSF overpass to 115th Street.
The second phase, which would cost an estimated $4.3 million, would be undertaken from 115th to 120th Street in 2021.
Public information meetings are planned for March with a report coming back to council after the public consultation.
“I really hoping that this will be something that everyone feels in the area will be a benefit,” said Coun. Lois Jackson. “It is a hugely travelled roadway. With the streamlining of the roadway, certainly the traffic will move more quickly through there as opposed to Scott Road on many days. I really hope that North Delta will buy into this upgrade and yet still be able to maintain the livability of the whole area.”
-with a file from Sandor Gyarmati