Concerns have arisen regarding an access road in Peace River that was temporarily closed after massive amounts of rain fell two weeks ago.
Mayor Elaine Manzer says the Town is taking precautions because the road is on a hill, and they want to ensure safety for travellers in the area.
The road in questions is 101 Street that leads north-south across the Heart River Bridge and upwards to the south end of town.
“During the summer of 2022, the hill behind the Points West building on River Road had slumped and the Town determined that work would need to be done on a stormwater sewer that had failed and required repair,” explains Manzer.
“As a precaution, during the summer of 2022, the 101 Street was reduced to one lane with traffic lights and barriers controlling the lane. At that time a Geotechnical firm was engaged to investigate the storm sewer and the area on the slope near it,” she adds.
Manzer says that slumping has been observed and there are also issues with a stormwater sewer drain, all matters the Town is in the process of fixing. She notes the Town has contracted an engineering firm and geotechnical firm to help monitor the slope.
“In August 2020, four slope inclinometers (SIS) were installed to regularly monitor the area for movement,” she says. “The firms monitor the SIS as needed and reported results in the fall of 2022, spring 2023 and again this week. The spring 2023 monitoring showed no obvious signs of deep-seated movement which was consistent with the fall 2022 readings.”
She says despite the spring 2023 reports, two surface washouts were observed after the torrential rainfalls in mid July.
“The Town has again taken a precautionary approach by restricting traffic on southbound lane of 101 Street by installing barriers and will soon install traffic lights,” Manzer says.
“The civil engineering firm that that Town had engaged to address the stormwater issues has completed a preliminary design for the replacement of the storm drain structure but is now reviewing the design with the geotechnical engineers after the recent rains and more monitoring to determine if there is deep-seated movement of the slope.
“The Town is also developing options for slope stabilization in this area but dealing with the stormwater issues is the first step.”
Manzer says at this time there is no estimated repair timeframe, but council recognizes the importance of repair. She says council is waiting for updated reports from administration as monitoring and planning is completed.
“Safe and working infrastructure is a priority for the Town including the monitoring, planning and implementation of the plans for this area’s stormwater and road systems,” says Manzer.
“101 street has been a viable access to the south end subdivisions for at least 50 years and its continuation as a viable access for residents is a priority,” se concludes.
Residents are asked to continue to be observant and obey traffic signs when they are in the vicinity.
Should residents have concerns, they can email at firstname.lastname@example.org, updates will also be provided on the Town’s website.
“During the next few days, administration is meeting with engineers and will be briefing council on possible solutions,” says Manzer.
By Emily Plihal, Local Journalism Initiative Reporter
Original Published on Aug 09, 2023