West Kelowna  

West Kelowna councillor concerned over traffic disruptions on Boucherie Road

Boucherie closure concerns

It's the busiest arterial road in West Kelowna, and at least one city councillor is very concerned over intermittent closures facing motorists throughout the spring and summer months.

Coun. Rick de Jong expressed those concerns Tuesday during a discussion around the next phase of construction of the Boucherie Road multi-pathway.

Construction of the next portion of the project, a 2.4 kilometre portion between Ogden and Green Bay roads, is expected to begin the middle of April and continue through to an expected completion date of Oct. 20.

The work will require intermittent road closures and detours throughout portions of the construction time, a concern for de Jong.

"We are going to be disrupting traffic a fair bit. We originally had hoped it would be done by summer, now we are going from spring right through to fall," said de Jong.

"It's great it is going to be open on the weekend, but as an arterial road it is busiest during the week.

"Tourists come in the summer months and they are here all week not just the weekend."

He suggested communication staff ramp up their efforts in order to remind people of the work and suggest those in other neighbourhoods who use Boucherie as a short cut to use another route.

Communications manager Kari O'Rourke said plans are already in place to beef up communication around the project.

"We have amped it up quite a bit. We do have our print, digital and community relations tactics that we will be doing throughout the season," O'Rourke told council.

She says written materials will be sent to businesses in the community as well as notification letters to residents and updates on the city's website.

"One of the key things that works best for us during construction communications is signage on the streets.

"The orange detour signage and messaging around planning their commute and to ensure they are keeping their speeds down."

As for the detours planned for Ogden, Thacker, and Montigny roads from mid-June through late August, staff indicate portable speed humps will not be put in place as they were during other phases of the project.

Staff suggested they get as many complaints from people about the speed humps as they do from residents concerned about speeders. The city will try and keep speeds down with the use of speed readers along detour routes.

Once finished, the project will include a multi-use pathway along Boucherie between Ogden and Gregory roads before dipping off-road through the Hatch and Quails' Gate Winery before connecting to Green Bay Road.

Mayor Gord Milsom reminded council that there will always be disruptions and challenges but, at the end of the day, sections of Boucherie Road will be safer for pedestrians and cyclists as a resulot of the work about to be done.

He also thanked the two wineries for their co-operation.

"Without that it would have been more difficult to do."

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