Posted on Nov 5, 2018

Sherwood Park Freeway Speed Limits

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Ms McKitrick: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. It's really a pleasure to ask a question that I wrote for myself on behalf of my constituents. Sherwood Park residents have asked me over the last few months the reason why the speed limits of the Sherwood Park Freeway have been changed. This road is a major connector to Edmonton. This topic is a hotly debated topic in letters to the editor, Facebook posts, Twitter, and calls to my office. To the Minister of Transportation: why were the speed limits changed?

The Speaker: The hon. minister.

Mr. Mason: Thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, and I must compliment the hon. member on her question today. Speed limits on provincial roads, including the Sherwood Park Freeway, are based on national and provincial standards. These standards take into account, among other things, the design of the road, traffic volumes, and the spacing between interchanges. Changes to speed limits occur frequently when additional lanes or interchanges or nearby roads are added to ensure safety. Speed limits are regularly reviewed by Alberta Transportation and will continue to be.

The Speaker: First supplemental.

Ms McKitrick: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. To the same minister: my residents are also wondering why the speed limit was lowered near the Anthony Henday interchange.

Mr. Mason: Well, thank you very much, Mr. Speaker, for that really solid follow-up. As the member is aware, a section of the Sherwood Park Freeway was expanded to include additional lanes as part of the northeast Anthony Henday Drive project and 17th Street on/off ramps and the Wye Road interchanges. As a result, a speed reduction to 70 kilometres an hour was required for safety reasons. [interjections] Thank you.

Ms McKitrick: Thank you, Mr. Speaker. I'm really sorry that everybody is laughing about this because this is a very important issue. It's a safety issue, and I think some of the members might be surprised as to who has brought this issue to the forefront in my office. But I understand that there's a review under way of the speed limits. I'm wondering: when will the results of the review be released, and how will constituents be informed of potential changes?

The Speaker: The hon. minister.

Mr. Mason: Thanks, Mr. Speaker. Well, based on ongoing feedback from Albertans we are conducting another review of the speed limits on both directions of the Sherwood Park Freeway. This review is expected to be completed early next year, at which point they will be shared with the public. When the review is complete, the ministry will have a better sense of what, if any, changes may be warranted. Safety is always our top priority. I want to thank the hon. member for her ongoing advocacy on behalf of her constituents. 

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