Bad Planning in Edmonton

The people designing Edmonton’s LRT extension must take first prize for “botching it”, when drivers will have to wait 16 minutes for a tram to cross a series of intersections.

Does anyone do any research at all?

I know that public transit should supersede auto traffic in revenue operation, but this is far too extreme.

In the real world, it takes a tram about 3 to 7 seconds to clear an intersection and about 10 to 15 seconds for a light to change from green phase to red phase, as done in hundreds of cities around the world.

There is no difference between a light controlled road/rail intersection and a light controlled road/road intersection, so why the long wait?

Really, a little bit of research and proper design, would have eliminated this 16 minute wait and as it stands it is nothing than an example of very poor planning.

Again, Canada becomes an international joke with its transit planning and I for one, am tired of it.

Drivers could be stuck at LRT crossing for up to 16 minutes: Metro LRT update

Emily Mertz By Web Producer Ai??Global News


EDMONTON ai??i?? Testing results of the Metro LRT Line found there could be ai???significantai??? traffic delays on key routes during peak rush hours and that some delays could be permanent.

At some crossings, aAi??report estimates drivers might wait only two minutes while LRT trains operate on a 15-minute frequency.

However, for two specific intersections being impacted by the LRT line, the wait could be as long as 16 minutes.

The report said, ai???Princess Elizabeth Avenue/106 Street and 111 Avenue/Kingsway Avenue will be particularly busy and traffic will queue in all directions. The addition of regular LRT service will create situations where queuesAi??will persist and lengthen until a train cycle has cleared and vehicle traffic cycles through for the intervening 15 minutes.

ai???Motorists are being advised to expect delays and be patient as during peaks hours it may take up to four cycles for a vehicle to have the opportunity to clear one of these intersections and that means up to 16 minutes waiting in a queue that extends multiple

ai???This is very disappointing,ai??? said Mayor Don Iveson.Ai??ai???I didnai??i??t expect the numbers to be like

ai???Council feels a little hoodwinked,ai??? added Councillor Bev Esslinger.

The Transportation Committee was told those two intersections currently clear within one traffic cycle.

ai???Iai??i??m honestly so gob-smacked I almost donai??i??t know what to ask,ai??? said Councillor Scott McKeen.

Trains may wait up to five minutes at MacEwan station to deal with traffic issues.

The intersections that will be most significantly impacted by the Metro LRT Line.

The intersections that will be most significantly impacted by the Metro LRT Line.

Tonia Huynh/Global News

The committee was toldAi??the Metro LRT Line is set to open on Sept. 6.

Part of the issue with the delays at intersections is because, at first, LRT trains will be travelling at a slower speed, so crossing gates will be down for longer periods of time.

However, once the trains are operating at a higher speed, the service will increase in frequency. The crossing gates will then come down more frequently but for shorter durations.

ai???Weai??i??re going a little slower but weai??i??re going less frequently right now,ai??? said theAi??cityai??i??s Transportation Services GM Dorian Wandzura.

Wandzura said the public education campaign had already started to prepare riders and drivers for the start of the Metro Line on Sept. 6.

Transit staff will be stationed at all crossings for the first week of operations.

Training started four weeks ago and train simulations have been done during non-peak hour service.

ai???I think the delays will go down as we settle into the system,ai???Ai??Wandzura said.

The Transportation Committee heard that even when the Metro Line is operating normally, there may only be a 15 per cent improvement to traffic flows in some areas.

Esslinger said she thought the city should increase public communication about the traffic impacts.

Iveson thought drivers should be made aware of the changes and expected delays so they could choose other routes if possible.

ai???Iai??i??m concerned this will kill the sentiment for the LRT,ai??? said Councillor Michael Oshry.

Late Wednesday, in a motion, the committee asked city administration to:

  • report on the feasibility of moving the NAITAi??LRT Station to east of 106 Street;
  • bring a report on other possible measures to mitigate issues identified with the Metro Line;
  • report on the feasibility of grade separating the Princess Elizabeth Avenue crossing as part of the next phase of NW Extension through Blatchford and beyond.

ai???This council needs to take control of these projects and that the info weai??i??re getting can be relied upon,ai??? said Iveson, stressing problems like this cannot happen again.


One Response to “Bad Planning in Edmonton”
  1. eric chris says:

    Transit spending in most major cities in Canada is out of hand, especially in Edmonton and Vancouver. I have a relative in Edmonton where property taxes pay for transit. In 2015 property taxes in Edmonton, policing costs were the most (15.14%) followed by transit costs (14.2%) which were the second most. Everyone benefits from police service. Maybe 10% of the population benefits from transit service, and the cost of transit based on the cost of policing deserves to be about 1.5% in Edmonton. Don’t even start me on the crazy cost of transit here in Vancouver.

    You know what? Small cities don’t even have transit. They do just fine. Now, I’ve noticed that Edmonton is copying the “successful” night owl service until 3:30 AM of Vancouver. Great; who the heck is paying? In Adelaide, Australia, I recall transit ending at 7 PM on Sundays. No one squawked about it. If you need to be somewhere on Sunday, evening, drive or walk.

    I don’t know what the heck is going on in Edmonton and Vancouver. Are the engineers competent or incompetent? We once had good municipal engineers who paid attention to costs 20 years ago. It seems that the crap has risen to the top in engineering in both Edmonton and Vancouver. Who is doing the engineering? It sure isn’t the overpaid and mediocre city engineers who sit on their asses all day and contract out all their work to the engineers who graduated from electrical, chemical and mechanical engineering programs.

    Rather than build complex and expensive hub to hub transit in dedicated right of ways with stops every two kilometres and signaling issues at intersections as seems to be the flavour of the day by municipal “engineers” who are building supposedly “fast transit” (without any math to back up their claims) to supposedly take cars off the roads, what’s wrong with trams/LRT and trolleybuses running on the roads with stops every 300 metres to 600 metres? We need some “new” engineers who actually do engineering to back up their planning in Vancouver and Edmonton instead what we have: deadbeat municipal engineering lifers who never get fired and who keep doing things wrong.