City gathering LRT input
Residents have second chance to weigh in on Tuesday
Saturday, Jun 21, 2014 06:00 am
It will be years – maybe even a couple decades – before LRT rolls into St. Albert.
But planning for that future is already underway.
A handful of people attended an open house event on Wednesday night to give feedback on potential corridors and locations.
A second open house will be held on June 24 in Progress Hall at St. Albert Place.
“We want to get your perspective and comments,” said Guy Boston, executive director of the economic development department for the city, to the mostly-empty room on Wednesday at the Kinsmen Korral.
The LRT plans need to be aligned with the city’s other strategic plans, he said. But planning now also shows the city’s commitment to being part of a regional LRT system.
It shows what land will be needed, can help define locations to accommodate future development and help the city start to position to get provincial and federal funding.
“We are talking about a long, long time frame,” Boston said, noting the earliest construction could start is at least 15 years from now.
However, corridor selection is underway now.
Kent Eklund, northern Alberta transportation manager for consulting firm AECOM, told the audience that the LRT will likely have a high floor urban style like Edmonton’s.
The start will likely be the future Campbell Road Centre and Park n’Ride, with the terminus to be determined. The plan is for St. Albert LRT to link in to the Edmonton system.
It’s anticipated funding will be a combination of municipal, provincial and federal funds.
“A P3, public-private partnership could be an alternative,” Eklund said.
A number of parameters will be used to decide on the route, Eklund said. Preliminary corridor selection criteria includes economic impact, mobility, land use, feasibility, environment and others.
Bob McDonald, director of St. Albert Transit, said the few attendees at the presentation did participate in the following workshop to give their ideas about selection criteria and possible routes.
They said the most important selection criteria is economic development. Areas that the LRT should reach in some way included downtown, new developments in the north and the “employment lands.”
McDonald is hoping more people come out for the June 24 session.