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Thread: Eliminating the hairpins at Gateway Blvd/Sask Drive/QE Drive

  1. #1
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    Default Eliminating the hairpins at Gateway Blvd/Sask Drive/QE Drive

    Originally posted in:
    http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum...r=asc&start=90

    I've been thinking about reposting this in a separate thread, since it's at the tail-end of a really long discussion on improving Gateway Blvd. I figure this contest is a good excuse. The primary reason for reposting it is because I really want the powers-that-be at City Hall to see my idea, because I think it's very doable. And if it gets me a trip to Old Blighty, all the better!

    Keep in mind that I'm no transportation engineer. This is based on several sightseeing walks along Saskatchewan Drive and what's left of my common sense.



    I think many will agree that the hairpin turns from Gateway Blvd to Queen Elizabeth Drive is, to put it mildly, goofy. It's another example of poor and backward-thinking transportation planning in the past, and it's hazardous to drive when it is snowy and icy. And yet I think this can be easily fixed.

    Here's how to remove these hairpins, in 4 easy steps:

    Step 1:
    From 86 Ave, rebuild Gateway Blvd so that it curves to the east until it is running north beside the building where the Richie Mill and New Asian Village is (current road at Saskatchewan Drive is Tommy Banks Drive). Most of that is parking lot anyway and the End of Steel Park can remain where it is. I'd say that only a minute amount of parkland is sacrificed. And there's still a bit of the old Tommy Banks Road left so that jazz enthusiasts aren't too honked off. In fact, this will allow for better exposure of the Yardbird Suite.

    Step 2:
    Normal signalled intersection at Saskatchewan Drive, replacing the current two signalled intersections at the current Gateway Blvd and Queen Elizabeth Drive. At this point, 2 lanes go north, and the rightmost lane turns onto Saskatchewan Drive. The current hairpin left-turn at Sask Drive and Queen Elizabeth Drive is removed. Sask Drive and the new Gateway are sloped down by a few feet at this new intersection so that it is more aligned with QE Drive at that point.

    Step 3:
    The new Gateway Blvd then crosses Saskatchewan Drive, curving left onto the current Queen Elizabeth Drive. Or, the intersection could even be moved a little to the west of the Richie Mill, and allow the Gateway to curve NW so that it is less of a sharp turn onto QE Drive.

    Step 4:
    The current Gateway Blvd between 86 Ave and Saskatchewan Drive can be turned into a small local road to serve the apartments along there, the rest of it is turned into parkland or a multi-use trail.



    The above idea eliminates the hairpin pins from Gateway to the Queen Elizabeth.
    It replaces two signalled intersections with one.
    It addresses the issue of the steep slope at current end of Gateway because it is more shallow at the Tommy Banks intersection.
    It minimizes the disruption of residents and existing parkland.
    It brings better exposure to the existing businesses currently on or around Tommy Banks.
    I don't see this as being terribly expensive. It's not like an overpass is being built here.

    This should be part of a greater scheme to improve Gateway Blvd from the city limits all the way to downtown, including an expanded Walterdale Bridge.

  2. #2

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    Even better, let's lower gateway boulevard just enough to get under Sask drive. Like this:


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    As I mentioned in the other thread I like the second idea where the roadway goes under Sask drive.

    This would also be a great opportunity to improve the pedestrian movement on sask drive and again maybe even create a quite large lookout point with interpretive signs. This could be situated either right next to the bridge at sask dr. or part of the bridge itself.
    LRT is our future, time to push forward.

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    An underpass under Sask Drive would be ideal. However, the intersection would have to be moved farther west because of the height difference between QE Drive and Sask Drive. It's quite shallow at the Tommy Banks point.

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    ^ Not necessarily. QE Drive could be lowered too if need be.

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    I still think that a cut and cover following the old CPR line thru the End of Steel Park is the best. Start from around the Iron Horse, and you can still have the park and a parking lot when you are done. This is no different than the underpass/pedestiran mall for the Leg over 109. With the right design, you can have Whyte still be Whyte, and get freer flow all the way to River Valley Road or 97th, your choice.

    I'll draw it when I have time.
    Onward and upward

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    Actually if you did start digging down around Iron horse or even a little before that you could have help the whyte area in eliminating the nasty traffic snarls one whyte and 103rd, especially on saturdays.
    LRT is our future, time to push forward.

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    exactly the point and purpose...
    Onward and upward

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    My only issues with the tunnel-under-Whyte idea are:
    - $$$$$$$$$$$$
    - deprives out-of-town visitors of a river valley drive and of passing through Old Strathcona on their way to their downtown hotels

    As for the traffic snarls at Whyte and Gateway, this can be remedied by turning the left-side street parking on Gateway into a left lane, and then adding a left-turn signal.

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    My only issues with the tunnel-under-Whyte idea are:
    - $$$$$$$$$$$$
    - deprives out-of-town visitors of a river valley drive and of passing through Old Strathcona on their way to their downtown hotels

    As for the traffic snarls at Whyte and Gateway, this can be remedied by turning the left-side street parking on Gateway into a left lane, and then adding a left-turn signal.
    Another example of small-town thinking for something that needs a MUCH larger fix than you propose.

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    depriving of the river valley drive?!!! PLEASE, DEPRIVE ME!

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    I should clarify that my proposal is something that be done RIGHT NOW until a better long-term solution for Gateway/Walterdale Bridge is put in place.

    I'm still on the fence on the tunnel-under-Whyte idea, so convince me otherwise...snide remarks ain't gonna cut it.

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    Tunnel under Whyte:
    -Resolves major traffic congestion at Clgy Trail/Gateway and Whyte (obviously).
    -Will allow the existing streets above ground to be reduced or kept the same without worrying about future traffic growth.
    -That can lead to added green space/commercial space, instead of losing the end of rail park.
    -It is direct, simple and a permanent solution.
    -Reducing traffic volumes, allowing redevelopment and decreasing the number of lanes on the existing section of Gateway Blvd, will make the gap between the "popular" part of Whyte west of Gateway and the east part of Whyte less noticeable or disapear.
    -Can be incorporated with a new bridge in the valley, it would be a signature development for the City and tie the Downtown core in much better with the Southside of the City and the Airport.

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    That about sums it up. All in favour, say "I".

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    Then, the way into downtown will be easy, and the way out will be a pain.
    Just like PEI, who make you pay when you leave.

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    Quote Originally Posted by highlander
    Then, the way into downtown will be easy, and the way out will be a pain.
    I think if the tunnel idea flies, there's no reason to not build the thing for both directions. Of course, this would require another bridge for SB traffic.

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    Not really, there is enough room for 4 lanes easily...
    Onward and upward

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    I love the idea! No long ago - before I found this forum, and after I spent about an hour commuting to downtown from the southside, I wrote the mayor pleading for a new high capacity bridge over the river. He wrote back saying that another High Level bridge is out of the question. BUT twinning the Walterdale to eliminate the bottleneck is doable.

    So this proposal would actually feed into what Mr. Mandel and I had talked about. I say 'aye' without hesitation!

    Loscoe

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    First, tunneling under whyte would cost at least $250 million (when comparing the $100 mill cost to tunnel under the U of A for the LRT). Then we have to build a new bridge. where does this money come from when the city can't afford the $150 mill for the gateway/23 ave overpass? What about other priorities such as the purchase of the few remaining natural spaces within the city? what about affordable housing?

    Second, not everyone who visits the city goes downtown. most people live and work in the suburbs and surrounding area. Therefore, many visitors would go visit friends/relatives there rather than stay downtown. sorry, but downtown is not so important that we should spend that much money to save 2 minutes of commute time for a few business people.

    Last, even if the tunnel is built, it would likely only 'fix' traffic congestion for a few years at best. Just look at the anthony henday, open for only a few months and already congested.

    New/wider roads are not the problem. too many cars and not enough alternative transportation methods are the problem. I would rather spend the money (if we had it) on a rapid transit system/LRT to the airport rather than on more roads.

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    "Second, not everyone who visits the city goes downtown. most people live and work in the suburbs and surrounding area. Therefore, many visitors would go visit friends/relatives there rather than stay downtown. sorry, but downtown is not so important that we should spend that much money to save 2 minutes of commute time for a few business people. "


    sorry sir, but you are terribly incorrect with this statement.....access to downtown, be it quick, beautiful, and uninterupted is VERY VERY important. It is the HEART of the city and be it business, cultural, residential.....it HAS TO BE PRIORITY.

    Sure not everyone goes downtown, but many many do and being the middle of the city, we need to insure it continues to have very very good access.
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  21. #21
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    snakes...
    many don't go dt because of the traffic. the city centre, the government offices, the theatres and the hotels must be easily connected with the rest of the city if we are going to grow and prosper. also, many more people live downtown then you think.

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    Quote Originally Posted by grish
    snakes...
    many don't go dt because of the traffic. the city centre, the government offices, the theatres and the hotels must be easily connected with the rest of the city if we are going to grow and prosper. also, many more people live downtown then you think.
    traffic...downtown Edmonton.....BAHAHHAHAHAHAHHAHA
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  23. #23
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    /\

    in case it was not clear, I am replying to snakes on the blog post that people don't go/ don't need to go downtown:

    Second, not everyone who visits the city goes downtown. most people live and work in the suburbs and surrounding area. Therefore, many visitors would go visit friends/relatives there rather than stay downtown. sorry, but downtown is not so important that we should spend that much money to save 2 minutes of commute time for a few business people.
    i think more edmontonians would go downtown if the access was better (enter the much talked about bridge) and a lot more people than one might think already live downtown and travel in and out of it (enter the much talked about bridge). we have many more poeple working downtown--not just the business people, but also government workers and people at law courts, city hall, etc and so a bridge allowing them easier acces to and from downtown is a good thing. finally, more and more cultural life is reestablishing itself downtown and people need convenient ways to acces it (enter the much delayed and much talked about new bridge).

    Ian, i think you meant "Haba-Haba-Haba-Haba!" you just misspelled it!

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    " think more edmontonians would go downtown if the access was better (enter the much talked about bridge)"

    i doubt it.... people dont go downtown in the numbers we want because:

    A: Edmontonians in general are suburbanites, people from surrey stay in surrey.

    B: unaware of what is downtown (124st shops, RHW, eats, Mall, etc.)

    C: have stereotypes of downtown as being unsafe etc.

    D: WEM


    a bridge wont bring people downtown, we need things downtown for people and inform them....then bring on da bridge
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    also, people suburbanites are scared of the lack of expansive, free, parking lots downtown. They get scared of the idea of parallel street parking, are too cheap to pay for parking, so they drive to the Common or WEM instead.

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    Quote Originally Posted by onishenko
    also, people suburbanites are scared of the lack of expansive, free, parking lots downtown. They get scared of the idea of parallel street parking, are too cheap to pay for parking, so they drive to the Common or WEM instead.
    yet when in van, calgary, toronto, etc. would go downtown in a second and complain at how dead/boring edmonton's is....

    why, cause YOU dont shop here.
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    ...but they are a tourist in DT Calgary, so folks write that off as a vacation expense.

    The residents in those places avoid DT and have the power centers. They key that Van and TDot have over us is a bigger DT residential contingent....
    Onward and upward

  28. #28

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    Quote Originally Posted by onishenko
    also, people suburbanites are scared of the lack of expansive, free, parking lots downtown. They get scared of the idea of parallel street parking, are too cheap to pay for parking, so they drive to the Common or WEM instead.
    My personal favourite part of suburbanite's complaints about parking downtown is how they'll park about three city blocks away from the mall entrance they need to get to without thinking about it, but if they can't park directly outside the business downtown they need to go to, then parking downtown is "impossible".

    Of course none of my customers are like that, 'cause I've got my own parking lot.

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    people go to WEM and South Edm Common because it's MUCH CLOSER to where they live, not because of parking downtown or other excuses. Most people in edmonton live in low density suburbs and the malls built up surrounding them show the lack of planning the city has allowed to have these flourish.

    I would like to have our downtown more exciting, more foot traffic, stores, events, theatre (by the way, the good/interesting theatres are in old strathcona - our real cultural district), but edmonton is to suburban to support such a downtown culture. Most businesses are attracted to the low cost/ low hassle industrial/commercial parks in the suburbs. Again closer to where their employees live.

    I've been to Calgary downtown afterhours and it's just as uneventful as Edmonton's downtown.

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    Well I think that's where the downtown of Edmonton is beginning to change.

    - All the new residential buildings
    - The new Sobey's
    - The U of A downtown campus
    - The MacEwan nurses building
    - New retain and restaurants moving in
    - New nightclubs

    All these projects are going to lend itself to a much more lively downtown.
    LRT is our future, time to push forward.

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    ^bingo

    downtown is just now coming of age....well since it died in the 70's.
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    What the naysayers towards a new bridge/Gateway fail to realize is that there's other users besides the local everyday commuters. Think of the tourists and business travellers coming from the airport to the downtown hotels. What are their first impressions as they drive down a road that cuts through a big-box purgatory followed by an industrial craphole (and then a brief, refreshing taste of dear Old Strathcona) until being forced to negotiate a confusing set of hairpins and left turns and right turns in the river valley before finally crossing a rickety 2-lane bridge? Duelling banjos, anyone?

    And that's a fatal flaw in the current Transportation Master Plan (especially when I personally quizzed a city hall egghead on this) - their cross-river traffic solution relies solely on public transit instead of including badly-needed road and bridge upgrades.

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    or...of they insist on having public transit take care of this, then they need to expand it NOW.
    Onward and upward

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    What the naysayers towards a new bridge/Gateway fail to realize is that there's other users besides the local everyday commuters. Think of the tourists and business travellers coming from the airport to the downtown hotels. What are their first impressions as they drive down a road that cuts through a big-box purgatory followed by an industrial craphole (and then a brief, refreshing taste of dear Old Strathcona) until being forced to negotiate a confusing set of hairpins and left turns and right turns in the river valley before finally crossing a rickety 2-lane bridge? Duelling banjos, anyone?

    And that's a fatal flaw in the current Transportation Master Plan (especially when I personally quizzed a city hall egghead on this) - their cross-river traffic solution relies solely on public transit instead of including badly-needed road and bridge upgrades.
    good argument. so where does the money come from? I would support a plan such as this if the costs would not have the potential to go through the roof. Whenever i think of tunneling, i think of the rediculous $100 mill cost of bringing the LRT from the university to the hospital.

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    Quote Originally Posted by snakes on a blog
    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey
    What the naysayers towards a new bridge/Gateway fail to realize is that there's other users besides the local everyday commuters. Think of the tourists and business travellers coming from the airport to the downtown hotels. What are their first impressions as they drive down a road that cuts through a big-box purgatory followed by an industrial craphole (and then a brief, refreshing taste of dear Old Strathcona) until being forced to negotiate a confusing set of hairpins and left turns and right turns in the river valley before finally crossing a rickety 2-lane bridge? Duelling banjos, anyone?

    And that's a fatal flaw in the current Transportation Master Plan (especially when I personally quizzed a city hall egghead on this) - their cross-river traffic solution relies solely on public transit instead of including badly-needed road and bridge upgrades.
    good argument. so where does the money come from? I would support a plan such as this if the costs would not have the potential to go through the roof. Whenever i think of tunneling, i think of the rediculous $100 mill cost of bringing the LRT from the university to the hospital.
    Let's ask Honest Ed about the $1.4 Billion he promised in Infrastructure improvements to cities and municipalities.

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    Exactly.
    Besides municipal taxes, these projects can be covered by provincial and federal grants for transportation. There's also P3 initiatives, such as what's being employed to build the SE AHD.

  37. #37

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    The elimination of the hairpins is very important for the optics of the city for business leaders. THis is the main entrance to the city core for people coming into Edmonton (due to YEG and QE2). When entering the city the road network is terrible and this tends to put negative views in peoples minds. I have had several collegues in from other cities or clients on the first trip to Edmonton make a comment that they thought Edmonton was a richer city but the drive in made them think otherwise as a city would have a proper road leading into its downtown. Remember perception is 3/4 of the argument and well we are losing on that from when people enter our fair city. Time to clean up this mess and really all of Gateway/Calgary Trail for that matter.

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    Leading up to the hairpin turn, what else does anybody think should be done for Gateway Blvd. The arch entering strathcona is really nice but there must be more that can be done to better improve the roadway.
    LRT is our future, time to push forward.

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    2 words...

    architectural controls!!!!

    Seriously though, I posted the whole shebang somewhere else...I'll try and find it.

    It basically comes to IMO utilizing whatever we can of the 99th Street intermodal when CP moves to avoid the Whyte Avenue traffic. A couple of stop lights can remain (I am thinking the Whitemud stuff as building an interchange there is...well...let's just say cost prohibitive), but an interchange at 23rd is a must. I could see lights on Argyle/63rd staying...
    Onward and upward

  40. #40

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    oh there is actually a thread on this already...

  41. #41

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    Guys.... its easy, just remove part of Sask drive, tunnel down towards QE Park road (Blue). Then put a bridge over Gateway (green), remove the hairpin thing, and BOOM, problem solved.






    Note. The bridge wont be coloured green.... the bridge and road is NTS.... Also, another note, this took me 5 min on word... as a joke.

  42. #42

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    ^That was the proposed plan, it made a ton of sense, but getting residents, and Whyte Avenue businesses (who don't want to be bypassed / miss the free advertising of Gateway drivers zipping past), to agree to it, is about a 0 possibility.

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    Heck if this city was flowing with money, for Gateway I'd suggest a dual lane expressway starting just south of Whyte which tunnels beneath Whyte and under the public washroom, continues along underneath the parking lots, underneath end of rail park and comes out at QE road.

    The pinchpoints at Whyte at both Gateway and 104st for the north/south movements is ridiculous. I'm glad Edmonton didn't go the way of freeways boxing in the downtown core, but the movement of vehicles in and out of downtown from the south is laughable at times and frustrating most times.

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    What I think happened was that someone on city council took the hairpin elimination ideas here to the transportation department who proceeded to botch it up. My plan (I blew away my photobucket years ago, sorry) was for the rerouted Gateway to be just 2-3 lanes, same as now. But in their plan COE added more lanes to Gateway from Whyte to Sask Drive, which aroused "no expressways through Whyte" outcries and that's what killed the project. I sometimes can't help but think that transportation will deliberately sabotage projects with overengineering if they don't want to do them.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  45. #45

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    All we need is a funicular for cars!
    I feel in no way entitled to your opinion...

  46. #46

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    The hairpin needs to be addressed. I know the city made the conscious decision to remove it from the Walterdale bridge project (it was originally in scope as part of the bridge "approach" mods). I know council at the time had indicated that the hairpin and potential underpass would be dealt with separately.

    But has anyone heard anything on this since?

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    As soon as the election is done we should start writing our councilors

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    I found my old Google Map doodle from the original post!
    So yes, I only drew 2 lanes from 86 Ave to Sask Dr. whereas COE planned for 3 or 4 lanes.



    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey View Post
    Originally posted in:
    http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum...r=asc&start=90

    I've been thinking about reposting this in a separate thread, since it's at the tail-end of a really long discussion on improving Gateway Blvd. I figure this contest is a good excuse. The primary reason for reposting it is because I really want the powers-that-be at City Hall to see my idea, because I think it's very doable. And if it gets me a trip to Old Blighty, all the better!

    Keep in mind that I'm no transportation engineer. This is based on several sightseeing walks along Saskatchewan Drive and what's left of my common sense.



    I think many will agree that the hairpin turns from Gateway Blvd to Queen Elizabeth Drive is, to put it mildly, goofy. It's another example of poor and backward-thinking transportation planning in the past, and it's hazardous to drive when it is snowy and icy. And yet I think this can be easily fixed.

    Here's how to remove these hairpins, in 4 easy steps:

    Step 1:
    From 86 Ave, rebuild Gateway Blvd so that it curves to the east until it is running north beside the building where the Richie Mill and New Asian Village is (current road at Saskatchewan Drive is Tommy Banks Drive). Most of that is parking lot anyway and the End of Steel Park can remain where it is. I'd say that only a minute amount of parkland is sacrificed. And there's still a bit of the old Tommy Banks Road left so that jazz enthusiasts aren't too honked off. In fact, this will allow for better exposure of the Yardbird Suite.

    Step 2:
    Normal signalled intersection at Saskatchewan Drive, replacing the current two signalled intersections at the current Gateway Blvd and Queen Elizabeth Drive. At this point, 2 lanes go north, and the rightmost lane turns onto Saskatchewan Drive. The current hairpin left-turn at Sask Drive and Queen Elizabeth Drive is removed. Sask Drive and the new Gateway are sloped down by a few feet at this new intersection so that it is more aligned with QE Drive at that point.

    Step 3:
    The new Gateway Blvd then crosses Saskatchewan Drive, curving left onto the current Queen Elizabeth Drive. Or, the intersection could even be moved a little to the west of the Richie Mill, and allow the Gateway to curve NW so that it is less of a sharp turn onto QE Drive.

    Step 4:
    The current Gateway Blvd between 86 Ave and Saskatchewan Drive can be turned into a small local road to serve the apartments along there, the rest of it is turned into parkland or a multi-use trail.


    The above idea eliminates the hairpin pins from Gateway to the Queen Elizabeth.
    It replaces two signalled intersections with one.
    It addresses the issue of the steep slope at current end of Gateway because it is more shallow at the Tommy Banks intersection.
    It minimizes the disruption of residents and existing parkland.
    It brings better exposure to the existing businesses currently on or around Tommy Banks.
    I don't see this as being terribly expensive. It's not like an overpass is being built here.

    This should be part of a greater scheme to improve Gateway Blvd from the city limits all the way to downtown, including an expanded Walterdale Bridge.
    “You have to dream big. If we want to be a little city, we dream small. If we want to be a big city, we dream big, and this is a big idea.” - Mayor Stephen Mandel, 02/22/2012

  49. #49

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    Quote Originally Posted by Mla View Post
    As soon as the election is done we should start writing our councilors
    AGREE!

  50. #50
    C2E Junkie *
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    Sigh...

    Given that we just did the Walterdale...and this was NOT included in the scope...odds of the hairpin being removed are slim to none in my lifetime...and Slim is packing his bags to leave town.

    It is somewhat disheartening that even after one of the original columns for C2E...the joke that is Gateway to the hairpin...still exists. I know I wrote one as well...even quoting Chapter 3 from a book "Baptism by Ice"...which sums up the Gateway experience perfectly even today.
    Onward and upward

  51. #51
    I'd rather C2E than work!
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    Back in the day, living in Waters Edge apartments, watched many car reach the end of 103 Street, keep going right over the walkway and into the trees.

    On time, must have been a stolen car because a bunch of teenagers jumped out, ran down to the road and hailed a cab.

    Yet, I've come to look upon that hairpin turn as a quirky bit of Edmontonia that I'd (almost) miss.
    ... gobsmacked

  52. #52

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    Quote Originally Posted by McBoo View Post
    Back in the day, living in Waters Edge apartments, watched many car reach the end of 103 Street, keep going right over the walkway and into the trees.

    On time, must have been a stolen car because a bunch of teenagers jumped out, ran down to the road and hailed a cab.

    Yet, I've come to look upon that hairpin turn as a quirky bit of Edmontonia that I'd (almost) miss.
    Oddly, none of those "many" ever made the news - significant since they'd have to cross the westbound traffic lane to even get to the walkway and trees. Maybe it's just not noteworthy anymore.
    I feel in no way entitled to your opinion...

  53. #53

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    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey View Post
    I found my old Google Map doodle from the original post!
    So yes, I only drew 2 lanes from 86 Ave to Sask Dr. whereas COE planned for 3 or 4 lanes.



    Quote Originally Posted by Sonic Death Monkey View Post
    Originally posted in:
    http://www.connect2edmonton.ca/forum...r=asc&start=90

    I've been thinking about reposting this in a separate thread, since it's at the tail-end of a really long discussion on improving Gateway Blvd. I figure this contest is a good excuse. The primary reason for reposting it is because I really want the powers-that-be at City Hall to see my idea, because I think it's very doable. And if it gets me a trip to Old Blighty, all the better!

    Keep in mind that I'm no transportation engineer. This is based on several sightseeing walks along Saskatchewan Drive and what's left of my common sense.



    I think many will agree that the hairpin turns from Gateway Blvd to Queen Elizabeth Drive is, to put it mildly, goofy. It's another example of poor and backward-thinking transportation planning in the past, and it's hazardous to drive when it is snowy and icy. And yet I think this can be easily fixed.

    Here's how to remove these hairpins, in 4 easy steps:

    Step 1:
    From 86 Ave, rebuild Gateway Blvd so that it curves to the east until it is running north beside the building where the Richie Mill and New Asian Village is (current road at Saskatchewan Drive is Tommy Banks Drive). Most of that is parking lot anyway and the End of Steel Park can remain where it is. I'd say that only a minute amount of parkland is sacrificed. And there's still a bit of the old Tommy Banks Road left so that jazz enthusiasts aren't too honked off. In fact, this will allow for better exposure of the Yardbird Suite.

    Step 2:
    Normal signalled intersection at Saskatchewan Drive, replacing the current two signalled intersections at the current Gateway Blvd and Queen Elizabeth Drive. At this point, 2 lanes go north, and the rightmost lane turns onto Saskatchewan Drive. The current hairpin left-turn at Sask Drive and Queen Elizabeth Drive is removed. Sask Drive and the new Gateway are sloped down by a few feet at this new intersection so that it is more aligned with QE Drive at that point.

    Step 3:
    The new Gateway Blvd then crosses Saskatchewan Drive, curving left onto the current Queen Elizabeth Drive. Or, the intersection could even be moved a little to the west of the Richie Mill, and allow the Gateway to curve NW so that it is less of a sharp turn onto QE Drive.

    Step 4:
    The current Gateway Blvd between 86 Ave and Saskatchewan Drive can be turned into a small local road to serve the apartments along there, the rest of it is turned into parkland or a multi-use trail.


    The above idea eliminates the hairpin pins from Gateway to the Queen Elizabeth.
    It replaces two signalled intersections with one.
    It addresses the issue of the steep slope at current end of Gateway because it is more shallow at the Tommy Banks intersection.
    It minimizes the disruption of residents and existing parkland.
    It brings better exposure to the existing businesses currently on or around Tommy Banks.
    I don't see this as being terribly expensive. It's not like an overpass is being built here.

    This should be part of a greater scheme to improve Gateway Blvd from the city limits all the way to downtown, including an expanded Walterdale Bridge.
    That's the one! The corner can have an increased radius if you angle the underpass. Totally doable and cannot understand why this was not fixed decades ago.

    Oh yeah, I forgot, transportation planning is too busy with other useless projects that screw up traffic...

    One thing about hairpins. They are a blast to drive. I am in Switzerland right now and must have driven around 80 or 100 hairpins in the past week alone plus double the number of traffic circles from, very small to quite large. Having a ball with may Ford Mondeo.

    Check out my recent drive up a 3000 foot climb in Torbel Switzerland to a 1,000 year old village where I am staying.

    Google map Torbel to see the many hairpins...
    Advocating a better Edmonton through effective, efficient and economical transit.

  54. #54

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    ^I don't mind hairpins at all when the only traffic you have to contend with is facing you. But in two lane one way hairpins you have to contend with the doofus that isn't maintaining lane positioning. Which happens with regularity on the Sask drive -> QE hairpin. People in this city can't even make a standard left turn and recover in the correct lane. Now add a hairpin turn to it..

    Mt Edith Cavell road is my fave road in the province. Lots of hairpin fun.
    "if god exists and he allowed that to happen, then its better that he doesn't exist"

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