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Round About To Come

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The Town of Swan River held their regularly scheduled council meeting last Tuesday evening (Nov. 17) with Mayor Lance Jacobson presiding and councillors Jason Delaurier, Phyl Friesen, David Gray, David Moriaux, Duane Whyte and Johnny Wintoniw present.
A number of issues were discussed including an improvement to the intersection of Hwy. No. 10 and Hwy. No. 83, proposed by Manitoba Infrastructure (MI) and requested for many years by the Town officials.
MI offered two options for consideration on how to improve the safety and traffic flow of the intersection.
The first option would have seen a controlled intersection with two lanes travelling east and west and the addition of a left-turning lane in both directions. A concrete median would also be extended in the eastwest direction. The north-south traffic would remain largely unaffected. 
The second option would see a single-lane round-about in all directions. Council received and passed a resolution to accept Option B. 
In discussion, Delaurier acknowledged that a lot of people expressed their opinion both online and in person since the Town made the proposals public.
“It’s been 13 years since the Town first brought this forward to MI,” he said. “One of the biggest concerns that has been brought forward to me was how come we can’t just have turn signals. The answer we’ve received time and time again and MI does not feel that would increase safety. The two proposals we have is what they’re willing to do.
“I understand there is a learning curve with a traffic circle, but it has the least amount of impact
on the surrounding businesses as far as access.” Delaurier noted that some have expressed to him that the intersection isn’t really all that dangerous as is, but he said that the danger comes when there is a
line of vehicles waiting to turn left on the inner lane, and have decreased visibility of who is driving
through the outer lane, when travelling east or west.
Whyte also added that, as far as what he understands from MI, this round-about will be large enough to accommodate combines with their header detached as well as B-train semitrailers. Gray indicated that
the round-about would also required less surrounding property to be taken over, and there was no guarantee that they could get that property if they went with Option A.
Director of Public Works Derek Poole repeated this statement, adding that – in his consultation with the lead engineer – tridem trucks would likely have more difficulty with a roundabout intersection than a
B-train.
All council members were on board sending MI the recommendation of Option B, with most verbally expressing their approval during discussion. Next Meeting The Town of Swan River will hold its next
regularly scheduled council meeting on Dec. 1 at 7:30 p.m.

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Jeremy Bergen
REPORTER
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