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Concern for school safety smacks of irony

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  |  Posted: Saturday, Dec 07, 2013 06:00 am

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Under normal circumstances, the St. Albert city council and administration should be applauded for their latest initiative; “Safe Journeys to School” as it appears to finally reflect a realization and genuine concern for a most serious threat to public safety which has long been ignored.

However, upon further examination one might suspect that the motivation for this undertaking reeks of a public relations exercise especially when considered in unison with the results of the Erin Ridge Traffic Study, recently released on the city’s website. While the former has been obviously triggered by the terribly sad tragedy whereby a little boy’s precious life was lost in a traffic accident virtually on the doorstep of his local school, the latter is purely an attempt to “pave over” (pun intended) the safety concerns of an entire subdivision. The irony of the situation cannot be denied by even the most jaded of individuals.

Since the release of the above mentioned report, the members of the Erin Ridge Residents Action Committee (ERRAC), myself included, have been diligently analyzing the data submitted by the firm commissioned by the city to undertake the study, and have discovered contradictions and flaws which place the conclusions of the report in serious question. This is not meant to cast any negative aspersions on the integrity or competence of those who conducted the study but one does wonder when on the third page of the preamble the following presupposition appears:

“It is anticipated that the assessment will provide all affected stakeholders with the comfort and confidence that current area roadway and parking concerns can be mitigated and that a new school can be designed and constructed in such a fashion that its operations will not negatively impact surrounding developments from either a traffic or parking perspective (with suggested recommendations implemented).”

The above conclusion is ludicrous to say the least, for how can the addition of any more traffic into an already overly congested area fail to have a negative impact or further exacerbate the dangerous nature of the current situation?

For any reader(s) who may find the above to be disconcerting you are urged to email the City at stalbert@st-albert.net by December 15, 2013 and/or attend a Public Consultation Meeting on Monday December 9, 2013 at 7 p.m. at the King of Kings Lutheran Church, corner of St. Albert Trail and Coal Mine Road.

Murray Lambert, St. Albert


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