Editorial — Crosswalk needed on 29 Avenue in Aldergrove

At the very least, the Township should install a crosswalk over the summer months, so that it is in place by September.

Aldergrove residents are bemoaning the lack of action on 29 Avenue pedestrian safety measures, following a serious incident earlier this year, where a 10-year-old boy on his way home from school was struck down by a motorist and seriously injured.

Specifically, they can’t understand why there has been no action on establishing a crosswalk between 264 and 272 Streets, where there is a secondary schools, a park and a recreation centre. An elementary and middle school are just to the south, and students from both cross the road daily.

A report to Township council suggests that traffic calming measures on the street “are not a priority.” This seems incomprehensible to those who regularly use the street, but suggestions by some that the Township deliberately ignores Aldergrove are a bit unfair.

It is certainly true that Aldergrove isn’t front and centre in most Township decisions, but that is because it is one of many communities within the Township. It could be argued that the Township is paying a lot of attention to Aldergrove right now — it is starting a major water line extension to the area which is one of the single largest projects ever undertaken by the Township. It has also advanced significant funds for playing fields in Aldergrove just this year.

Aldergrove does have the disadvantage of being split between two municipalities. Most newer homes in the area are actually located in West Abbotsford, and thus far the City of Abbotsford has done almost nothing in the way of improvements to benefit those residents.

Recreation facilities and neighbourhood shopping is provided in the Langley Township portion of what people generally know as Aldergrove, although a major shopping centre is under construction near Mount Lehman Road and Highway 1. This will undoubtedly shift some shopping patterns, and may be a significant challenge for some Aldergrove businesses.

In the meantime, the residents who have campaigned to make 29 Avenue safer make some excellent points.

At the very least, the Township should install a crosswalk over the summer months, so that it is in place by the time school resumes in September.

More enforcement of traffic laws along the street would also make good sense.