County sets highways wish list

Richard Froese
South Peace News

Several projects to improve highways in Big Lakes County were given priority as council set its wish list to Alberta Transportation.

At its regular meeting Oct. 10, council approved priorities for infrastructure projects after reviewing recommendations by Vic Abel, director of public works.

Hilliard’s Bay Road was added to the list as suggested by Grouard Councillor Fern Welch, although it does not comply with the criteria that asks for highways under jurisdiction of the provincial government.

Abel says the county is responsible for the road.

Council inserted Hilliard’s Bay Road as number four.

“I don’t think there’s any harm putting it on the list,” Reeve Ken Matthews says.

Others agreed.

“It will be a reminder to Alberta Transportation that it’s our priority,” High Prairie East – Banana Belt Councillor Don Charrois says.

Matthews says that during the Alberta Urban Municipalities Association convention in late September, councils were advised that funding for potential projects will likely be high priority for the ruling government heading into a provincial election next May.

“Going into an election year, list something you believe you will get funding for,” Matthews says.

Peace regional director Ryan Konowalyk has requested that municipalities submit a prioritized list of Alberta Transportation infrastructure projects to assist the regional director in securing funding for projects in the area, Abel says in a report.

Council endorsed the priorities in preferred ranking.

1a – Repair or overlay Highway 679 between Range Road 163 [Peavine paved access road] at Highway 750 to eliminate the year-round road ban.
1b – In conjunction with work to Highway 679, Big Lakes County is interested in commencing the asphalt rehabilitation phase of Range Road 163, Township Road 780 and Range Road 160 under the agreement between Alberta Transportation and Big Lakes dated June 4, 1997.
2a – Highway 749 overlay.
2b – In conjunction with the overlay of Highway 749, the county requests improvements at the intersection at Township Road 740 [Gilwood Road] west of High Prairie.
3 – Highway 747 [to Sunset House] overlay.
4 – Pave and upgrade the Hilliard’s Bay Road.
5 – Install street lights at the intersection of Highway 749 and Township Road 750 [High Prairie bypass road].
6 – Install street lights at the intersection of Highway 750 and the Hilliard’s Bay Road.


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