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Highway 40X completion pivotal part of city’s Transportation Master Plan

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Finishing the Highway 40X bypass will likely be one of the keys to the future of transportation in Grande Prairie.

The plan, which lays out the city’s vehicle and pedestrian transportation needs based on population projections rather than a strict timeline, tackles issues like congestion, walkability, and transit services.

Traffic Operations Supervisor Wade Nellis says a major component of the plan would see the completion of Highway 40X. Nellis explains the road connecting Highway 43 west and Highway 40 south of the City of Grande Prairie is as close to a must-have as a project can be.

“The completion of the southwest section of the ring road would be absolutely pivotal for the development of the City of Grande Prairie. Moving a lot of that heavy industrial traffic off of Wapiti Road would really allow us to address some of the safety and speed concerns we have there.”

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“One of the things we look at when we are designing roads is the percentage of heavy traffic we are going to have,” he adds.

Nellis says when it comes to tangible differences Grande Prairie residents are likely to see in the shorter term however, they will be on some well-used sections of roadway in the city.

“Consideration of some six-laning along sections of the bypass as well as some twinning of Wapiti Road south of 68th avenue.”

Nellis adds that, contrary to popular belief, data suggests that congestion isn’t a major issue at this point in time, and only a couple of upgrades will fit within the first level of the population mentioned in the plan.

“The upgrades that are identified at the 70,000 person population level are basically just some widening and intersection improvements that will help with traffic flow.”

City council will vote on the 2020 Grande Prairie Transportation Master Plan at its August 24th meeting.

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