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Road closure bylaw for Civic Square laneway

Posted on July 13, 2023 by Sunny South News

By Nikki Jamieson
Sunny South News

Coaldale council is considering options related to the closure of laneway sections near Civic Square, which are expected to assist with the development of the outdoor gathering space in Coaldale’s downtown, behind the new Civic Square building.   

During their regular June 26 meeting, Coaldale town council discussed Road Closure Bylaw 867-P-03-23, which would see the closure of two sections of developed laneways, located between 18th and 19th Avenue, south of 21st Street. The Town wants to close the laneways to help facilitate the future development of the Civic Square outdoor space.

If the road closure bylaw is approved and the closure of the laneway sections proceed, they will then be merged into the adjacent town-owned land.

“This road closure bylaw conforms with council’s direction to proceed with the development of Phase 2 and Phase 3 of the Civic Square project. By closing these portions of road and consolidating the land with adjacent parcels, development of the outdoor space may proceed,” said Hailey Winder, senior planner for the Town.

Unlike other bylaws, road closure bylaws require approval from the Minister of Transportation before the second and third and final readings can take place. Additionally, upon its passing, finalization and registration must be filed with Alberta Land Titles.

Coun. Bill Chapman asked if the road closure would be of a permanent nature. Mayor Jack Van Rijn noted that any bylaw can be rescinded. Van Rijn asked how people would gain access to the rear of the property if they close the back lane and there is a special event in the atrium. Winder said it would be town-owned land, so approval will be needed from the Town to have vehicular access.

“Essentially, what this bylaw is doing is just closing that portion for public thoroughfare,” said Winder adding, “public travel that’s not affiliated directly with the use of this building will be restricted in that sense.”

CAO Kalen Hastings said the portions of laneway that will be closed to public travel will be hard-scaped, so people could still drive on it. There would also be curbs and bollards to keep vehicles in the nearby parking lot to prevent them from accessing pedestrian spaces.

“So we’re obviously going to be designing the parking lot so vehicles are unable to drive on that surface where there’ll be pedestrians or tables set up in the summer time,” said Hastings. “But we also want to give ourselves the flexibility to bring in a truck or a trailer to set up equipment. If, for instance, we need to set up a stage for a concert or something like that, that’s where we would have the ability to drop down the bollard for that special event, but keep vehicles out at any other time outside of that.”

Council unanimously passed first reading of Road Closure Bylaw 867-P-03-23.

A Public Hearing date for the bylaw was scheduled for July 10.

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