New rumble strips could soon be installed on Ninth Avenue Northwest near the Highway 1 entrance, which would thrill Grant Pohl since he is concerned about that intersection’s safety.
Pohl has been lobbying city hall for more than two years to re-install the safety features but has met with little success. Every time he phoned the engineering department’s office, someone would supposedly tell him that the municipality would investigate it — but nothing would happen.
He phoned the department again several months ago, hoping to speak with the top engineer — possibly the department director — but did not receive a call back.
“It’s just a concern of mine. You and I will never know if we saved a life, but it’s a reminder — that’s why they’re there,” Pohl said.
Pohl, 75, expressed confusion about why the city hasn’t acted faster, considering numerous accidents and fatalities have happened at that intersection over the years. He pointed out that there are rumble strips in the Village of Tuxford reminding motorists to stop before they reach the highway.
What has made this particular intersection more troublesome in Pohl’s mind is that the Co-op installed a card lock on the North Service Road years ago, which increased traffic volumes since there is also the A&W restaurant and other businesses. He suggested that most people would be horrified if they watched the daily dance of vehicles in and out of that area.
“Someday, you’re going to have two 18-wheelers — and maybe they’re carrying gasoline — and you’re going to have a real mess on your hands,” he said.
Pohl spoke to the provincial government about installing traffic lights at the intersection but was told it wasn’t possible. He argued otherwise, saying there are traffic lights on many major highways, such as in Medicine Hat and near Pilot Butte when the province constructed the overpasses.
The Moose Jaw Express reached out to city hall about this issue and asked several questions to confirm Pohl’s statements and allegations.
City hall responded in an email, saying, “We appreciate feedback from residents, and in this case, the city supports the installation of rumble strips approaching this intersection. We will be able to perform the work using city equipment at minimal cost.”
In a follow-up email, city hall added that it would begin the work the week of Sept. 20 and expected the project to cost $500.
Upon learning that rumble strips would soon be installed, Pohl replied, “I am very much (pleased).”
The Express visited the intersection on Sept. 22 and found that the municipality had not started the work yet. However, the weather for the rest of the week is expected to be sunny, so city crews still have time to complete the project.