Weyburn Saskatchewan - Weyburn's new city manager wants more time to work with city staff and with Canadian Pacific Railway (CP) to find a solution everyone can live with for the Queen Street rail crossing, council was told Monday evening in an update on the issue.
Roy Hardy said he has been working with the city's acting engineer to move the project forward, and noted he wants to address both the safety of the rail crossing on Queen Street just off Highway 39, and the nearby intersection of Highways 39 and 13.
"I feel there are some questions that need to be put forward with the issue of the safety of the crossing at Queen Street at the intersection of Highways 13 and 39. I'm working to get something in to council as quickly as possible, so we can lay out two or three options that address both of those issues," said Hardy, adding there are potentially some short-term solutions that could be done in the meantime, such as cutting back the brush that block a clear view of the tracks coming into Weyburn.
The issue of safety has been a longtime problem for both the intersection and the rail crossing, and the crossing came to the fore with a recent accident there, and CP expressed the opinion they would rather see that crossing closed.
One of the objections raised to this scenario was that it would force more traffic into the dangerous intersection at Highways 13 and 39, where two busy highways cross at sharp angles.
With the rail crossing classified as one of the most dangerous in Canada out of over 21,000 crossings, the city needs to find a solution or one will be imposed by a higher level of government, said Hardy.
"I don't want this to suffer from the paralysis of analysis on this issue," said Coun. Jeff Richards, noting this has been discussed already for several years.
Hardy said he wants to look into the possibility of federal grant funding to help the city find a safe solution to this issue, "so there are channels I will be looking into with Transport Canada, and what type of solutions the federal government might be able to support."
In the meantime, he will also look into what can be done to cut back the brush along the rail line to improve the sight lines for traffic at the crossing, and at the intersection.
OKthePK Joint Bar Editor: Article abridged - council squabbling removed.