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COMMENTARY · 5th July 2012
Walter McFarlane
This week’s Thursday Morning editorial, under the working title of “The True Meaning of Canada Day,” has been delayed. Instead we bring you the following top five list.

During the Hill Climb on June 30th, I made the mistake of going down Albatross in a large truck. The street had been converted into one lane traffic by cars parked on either side of the street and traffic was trying to go both ways.

I had considered writing a ‘top five’ editorial on the streets in Kitimat for a few years now and decided to consult with some other locals before writing it. They pointed me to a few streets I hadn’t even considered.

For the record, a very close runner up was that silly intersection in Terrace on Queensway where the streets don’t even line up. However, it’s in Terrace.

Public Safety Parking Lot: The one parking area on my list is the one at the Public Safety Building. The building is a historical location in Kitimat, being the home of the Kitimat Fire Department, the current home of the City Council Meetings and the one time home of many different Kitimat organizations.

It was built at a different time and has one of the strangest parking lots in Kitimat. In addition to a blind corner, it feels cramped to drive through.

Quatsino Boulevard: The Bill Rich Soccer Fields is certainly a destination for local youth. However, it has been pointed out there are no sidewalks along the road. The constant movement has however created a trail through the grass. One source stated local youth do travel right along the roads.

Cormorant Street: A part of the problem with this street has been dealt with. The number of cars parked on either side of the street can make this street into one lane traffic, which is particularly nasty as you get closer to Albatross Avenue. Fortunately, the sidewalk area around Kitimat City High, the old Cormorant Elementary School, has been designated a no parking zone.

Olichan Avenue: The entrance to Cablecar would be far better off if it had a turning lane for traffic coming from Terrace. A comment we received from people who travel the highway is they have seen several near misses.

Councillor Mary Murphy proposed some adjustments for this intersection at a Council Meeting, then changed her mind for the next meeting. We recently talked to her and she told us administration expressed it was out of the hands of the District and in the hands of the Province.

Haisla Boulevard: Notably between the first set of traffic lights and the bridge. There are several reasons this stretch of road is number one. The first traffic light is programmed to signal pedestrians across the road at the same time it is signalling traffic through the intersection.

A second reason is the parade of young people traveling between liquor establishments on weekends. They walk in the centre of the road. There are no sidewalks for them to walk on, unless you wish to count the median.

This road also had a problem earlier this year when the forward sensor bar at the traffic light closest to A&W stopped working. Vehicals either had to wait for another vehical to come up behind them, or reverse onto the rear sensor bar to trigger the light.

Feel free to add to this list with a comment and include why it should be here.
Safety first
Comment by Angie on 15th July 2012
Quatsino Blvd needs a sidewalk, with the number of speeders down that street and lack of a walkway especially in the winter, it serves as an accident waiting to happen.
Quatsino blvd is the only link between Kildala and Moutianview, all other sidewalks lead to City Centre. This is NOT very accessable for the newly relocated Hospital, Mountianview Lodge and other services from Mountianview square.
Priorizing road repairs
Comment by Jack Riddle on 5th July 2012
You are right Walter, there are streets needing work in Kitimat but I would differ with you on some of them. At the present time we have Meldrum completely torn up and I am not able to say why, it appeared just fine but perhaps there were drainage issues or something not obvious to the eye. I do know though that White, Finch, Fulmar and many more have huge pot holes that need fixing. Possibly we could get some communication from the district on why some residential streets get more attention than others.
Surprised this one was missed...
Comment by AJ on 5th July 2012
Corner of Lahakas and Quatsino.

I've witnessed a few near misses here. Just a matter of time before there is a major collision at this intersection when someone "guns" it to get across Quatsino to the dirt road, to the old "Braun's farm" area. Should be a third lane for turning right onto Quatsino, and even better is to have three lanes from the crosswalk (between the two arena's) to Quatsino. This area gets quite congested at times and with two lanes going east, that congestion would be relieved, especially getting into the hospital road.

It's kind of too bad that this town wasn't designed (or it seems) for three or four lane roads. Like four lanes from the "lights", right through to the service center including a four lane bridge. Wide load vehicles would like that one.
mall parking lot
Comment by Bryan on 5th July 2012
Overall, Kitimat doesn't have many "bad" roads, at least when compared to other places.......like Terrace. But, I think the upper City Center Mall parking lot is the stupidest thing I've seen, possibly anywhere. If one follows the directional arrows to get where you want to go, you'll go everywhere. It seems like it was designed by someone who thought there would be ten times the traffic volume there is.