Hey! Don’t forget to donate your hides and shed antlers to the Alberta Fish and Game Association’s wildlife habitat conservation program. Those things are worth money and the AFGA does good things with it. You could even win rifles, as noted in a Spotlight article a couple of weeks ago. Arlene and Kirk in Kinuso are the agents for the AFGA in this area who collect the hides. Give them a call at 780-775-2232.
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There are a lot of problems with traffic on Hwy. 88 between Slave Lake and the Hwy. 754 turn-off. That’s not news, but last week’s crash of a truck carrying crushed cars has prompted somebody to start making phone calls. Roland Eben-Ebenau started jotting down the recent accidents he could think of off the top of his head and what he came up with was not a pretty picture. He’s ready to start rallying some people to promote improvements to the highway.
Documenting the incidents might be a good way to start. Roland came up with six major ones in the past year or so. At the top of the list were the two fatalities – one of a father of five on his way to work, the other of an employee at the Boreal Centre for Bird Conservation.
In July, a loaded B-train went into the rhubarb at km. 26
In August another heavy truck hit the ditch on the other side at km. 28
Also in August at km. 11 a loaded fuel tanker and trailer rolled into the ditch, spilling thousands of litres of diesel.
On Sept. 22 at km. 25 the most recent big truck rollover.
Add to that many near misses, passing when unsafe, panic braking, wildlife encounters – many when traffic is heavy and of course no room for error when the shoulders are so narrow.
It’s a bad combination, Roland says, of high-intensity industrial traffic mixed with low-intensity family traffic and (in-season) meandering tourist traffic. There’s also ‘high evidence of routine drinking while driving’, he says.
What to do about it?
Heavy enforcement is one option. Reducing the speed limit to 80 is another. Turning lanes for side roads is an obvious one.
Widening the road is the most obvious and perhaps the most necessary.
“Why should the first 35 kilometres to the Wabasca turnoff be smaller than Hwy. 2?” Roland asks. “This is not a backwoods local municipal road.”
Roland says he’s going to be contacting people he thinks might be able to contribute to a lobby effort to do something about the problem. He’d also like to better document the incidents that occur and have occurred on that stretch of highway in recent times. If you know of any that have not been mentioned above, feel free to contact The Leader at 780-849-4380 or e-mail firstname.lastname@example.org.
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This just in: The Town of Slave Lake wants public input into the upgrade options for the arena. So they’re holding three open houses, Oct. 6, Oct. 8 and Oct. 18, and they’re doing it in a non-traditional style.
The first is at the arena, Monday, Oct. 6 from 5:00 p.m. - 9:00 p.m. On Oct. 8, the scene shifts to Tim Hortons for a 9:00 a.m. - 12 noon open house.
On Saturday, Oct. 18, town staff will be at Canadian Tire from 10:00 a.m. - 1:00 p.m.
So drop by, check out the drawings and air your views!
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It appears that the housing crunch of recent years may finally have loosened up.
With the new affordable housing complex on 11 Ave. SW now open, there should be at least a handful of vacancies appearing around town.
Some folks have argued that there should be no cap on the income level of tenants looking to rent a suite in the new building, but that would defeat the purpose of affordable housing.
Still, Slave Lakers could be considered lucky. In Wood Buffalo, the average rental rate for a two bedroom apartment is $1,684.
The whole issue is a vicious circle: CMHC blames high property values for driving up rental demand, which begs the question: Would you rather make more money, or pay less rent?
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