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Ladner intersection due for makeover
One of Ladner's busiest traffic hubs is due to be changed, but the Corporation of Delta isn't yet sure what it might look like.
Although the project and budget to reconfigure Arthur Drive and Ladner Trunk Road has been approved in principle by council, it's still in the design phase, said Coun. Robert Campbell.
Delta's chief administrative officer George Harvey and engineering director Steven Lan have also consulted with the Ladner Business Association (LBA) to see what businesses might find appropriate.
So far, Campell said he's attended a couple of design workshops that are looking at three possible changes.
The first is a traffic roundabout, the second a "scramble intersection," and the third a traditional intersection with additional left turn and wider lanes.
"There's lots of reasons why a roundabout is not appropriate at this particular location," said Campbell, the primary one being it would require acquiring some land, specifically where the insurance building is currently sitting on the west side of the intersection.
"[Roundabouts] take up more real estate and they're hard to move pedestrians with," he added. "If you've got no pedestrian movement to worry about they're probably a good idea."
Municipal staff are looking the rare "scramble intersection" right now. There's currently one in the City of Richmond at Steveson where Moncton Street and No. 1 Road intersect. Basically, a scramble is an intersection where traffic moves normal while pedestrians wait on all corners, and then traffic stops while pedestrians have complete access to the road, including directly across the middle of the intersection.
"Sounds like what we have right now," joked Brad Cooper, president of the LBA, referring to the intersection as a "gong show."
Cooper expressed skepticism that a scramble would be useful most of the time, but said anything would probably be an improvement to the current situation.
He's concerned that as Ladner and Tsawwassen grow, Arthur Drive is going to become more strained in trying to handle the traffic burden.
"We all want to see densification, we all want to see more stuff, but then we don't have any more places to put the street," he said.
Campbell said there may be a phased-in approach where the traditional intersection is built, with a scramble installed after traffic patterns are studied.
"It's kind of fluid right now. The criteria are let's take the least space as possible for the intersection and maximize pedestrian movements."
Cooper pointed out that the area is often pedestrian-heavy because of the nearby high school as well.
Campbell is hoping a final design plan will be brought before council by the end of September with work beginning in early 2013.