Surrey citizen Quratulain Bajwa recently submitted a letter to The Leader concerning safety at a particular intersection (72 Avenue and 124 Street).
To me this shows one of the huge problems with roads and intersections everywhere in Surrey: Bad design.
There is as much need to keep traffic flowing smoothly and safely as there is to keep pedestrians safe.
Should this intersection be truly that busy and dangerous, then right-turn lanes must be installed in all four directions, no matter how short and narrow they end up being; this can be done without any significant property acquisition in all directions.
Volume counts in 2009 (on the City of Surrey website) show that the section of 72 Avenue between 120 and 128 Streets carries between 32,000 and 33,000 vehicles daily. That means it is one of the busiest roads in the city, competing with other busy roads such as 88 and 104 Avenues, King George Boulevard, Fraser Highway and Scott Road.
A lack of right-turn lanes has been a significant problem at many other locations throughout the city; this is especially a problem where right turns are popular at an intersection where there is only a single lane for both through traffic and those turning right and frequent pedestrian movement.
The intersection of 156 Street at 100 Avenue is a great example. A lack of right-turn lanes in the south-bound direction often causes congestion.
Among other problem intersections is the one four blocks north, 104 Avenue and 156 Street, which hosts what could be one of the most overused left-turn lanes in the city and is a mess for both traffic and pedestrians. Were it not for a flag person employed by nearby Harold Bishop Elementary School, many children who cross the street would be in danger from the vehicles that frequently run the yellow lights at this dangerous and extremely poorly designed intersection.
There needs to be an immediate review of the several roads and intersections in the City of Surrey that are both dangerous and having to handle more than their designed capacity.
I’m not saying that our roads immediately need more lanes.
I do think though that if the city cannot bother spending extra money into improving safety and capacity at our roads and intersections, or there’s no room left to expand, then Surrey immediately needs to move for the construction of competitive rapid transit, such as SkyTrain.
Daryl Dela Cruz