Council talks pedestrian crossings during budget deliberations
An amendment by Ward 8 Coun. Woolley Calgary during city council budget talks today shed some light on pedestrian bridges in the city.
Woolley wished to make an amendment on a Pedestrian Overpass Program to allow for transportation to look at a wider array of solutions for transportation infrastructure.
“If we have an overpass that needs millions in upgrades and there’s only 40 to 80 people using it, I find a challenge in fixing it,” he said.
There’s currently about 200 pedestrian bridges in the city, with some coming up for lifecycle renewal, Transportation staff explained. The budget for the program is $22 million.
Transportation officials explained while some overpasses don’t have the same volume as others, they’re still critical links, a sentiment echoed by Ward 11 Coun. Brian Pincott, who noted the difference in potential pedestrians between his ward – encompassed of communities such as Cedarbrae, Kingsland and Mayfair -and Ward 8, comprised of the more heavily populated Beltline, Mission and Killarney.
“How will a falling down pedestrian bridge in my ward, that might get 50 or 100 people a day that use it, ever compete with an underpass that gets 50 every five minutes?” Pincott asked.
Ward 7 Coun. Druh Farrell said she was sympathetic to Woolley’s suggestion but wouldn’t be supporting it.
“Either we fix them or take them out,” she said.
She pointed out underpasses in the city should be made priority.
“People are living the way we’ve asked them to, they’re walking to work…but in some cases there aren’t even sidewalks, the sidewalks are missing.”
Woolley’s amendment was voted down. His supporters were Mayor Naheed Nenshi, Ward 9 Coun. Gian-Carlo Carra and Ward 12 Coun. Shane Keating.
City of Calgary budget talks resume throughout the week.
Calgary pedestrian bridges recently constructed or underway
- Heritage Drive
- Shaganappi Trail
- Anderson Road
- Macleod Trail and 61st Ave.