Although snowy roads may be the last thing on your mind right now, at Monday's Regular Council Meeting for The City of Red Deer, the topic did get discussed.
Council unanimously approved a shift to how administration will maintain roadways in all four season, including the approach towards residential snow and ice control through a pilot program that will run this winter.
City Council approved the revised Integrated and Accessible Transportation Policy that outlines four key principles that will guide how roads are maintained year-round that include:
- Safe: The infrastructure systems encompassing all modes of transportation is safety through a priority-based ranking system to ensure critical infrastructure and services are maintained first. A mobility hierarchy will prioritize the movement of motorized vehicles first, followed by pedestrians and transit, with on-street parking restored once mobility is realized.
- Accessible: Users can get to where they need to with minimal barriers to mobility. Should barriers exist, The City will work to re-establish uninterrupted access in a timely manner and free of impediments.
- Well Maintained: Users experience well maintained roads, trails, sidewalks, and transit stops through all four seasons with commitments to flexible responsive service, ride comfort and experience, preparedness and equity.
- Accountable: Citizens can access the policy, know how to access information, be well informed of the program and schedule and understand their role in supporting a multi-modal community.
“This revised policy approved today by Council means we can be more responsive to our snow and ice operations, shifting to be faster, more proactive and flexible that means citizens will see mobility restored sooner following snow and other extreme weather events,” said Greg Sikora, Manager of Parks and Public Works.
A pilot program will run this winter, which will test different snow and ice operations and maintenance approaches. A major shift is the approval of a mobility hierarchy which stipulates that on-street parking will be restored only once mobility is realized and could come in the form of city-wide residential parking bans.
More information on how snow and ice operations will look next winter will be shared with the public over the coming months.