Calgary city council rejects Crowchild Trail plan

City council has voted unanimously to send transportation planners back to the drawing board on fixing bottlenecks on Crowchild Trail.

There are a series of traffic lights on the road between the Bow River and the University of Calgary, which result in long lines of traffic every day.

But fixing the problem by building several interchanges and new bridges over the Bow was criticized last month when the city asked for public feedback on its transportation plan for the busy road.

Some, including city council members, said the billion-dollar plan was too costly, tears down too many houses and does nothing to help the communities that Crowchild Trail passes through.

Ward 7 Ald. Druh Farell says the plan is outdated.

“The plan was something reminiscent of something we would have done in the 1970s and 1980s,” she said, adding that Calgary has changed since then and fixing Crowchild will need to incorporate more transit and respect the needs of surrounding communities as well as commuters.

“I expect a little bit more creativity moving forward.”

Roughly $500,000 was spent on the old Crowchild plan. A new one is expected to be ready next fall.

Until then, Mayor Naheed Nenshi wants to look at temporary fixes like altering the timing of lights at Fifth Avenue and 24th Avenue to see if traffic flow can be improved without big spending.

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