At the January 18th 2010 Town Council meeting the corporate priorities for 2010 were approved.
The Corporate Priorities include:
• Municipal Sustainability Plan
• Master Tourism Strategy
• Develop the Main Street Feasibility Role
• Implement the Downtown Traffic Study recommendations
• 10 year Capital plan
Each of these priorities included a work program which included communication strategies on each project.
Once of the main priorities for council in this quarter will be to implement the recommendations from the Downtown Traffic Study. For many years the Town has partnered with the Drumheller and District Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Merchants to promote downtown revitalization through land use planning and infrastructure improvements.
The goal was to enhance the appearance of the downtown core and increase its viability as a retail district. It became very evident at these meetings that traffic flow was an issue for the community. Business owners and Town officials recognized the fact that a downtown revitalization plan needed to include a wide range of enhancements and improvements. The first phase of the program was to develop a traffic study.
The objectives of the traffic study included:
• Current and future traffic patterns in the downtown area
• Additional tourism traffic as a result of the Canadian Badlands initiative
• Additional traffic as a result of the Badlands Community Facility
• Additional traffic due to population growth.
• The most efficient traffic flow for the public
• Current policies and bylaws regarding traffic and redevelopment
The Town of Drumheller hired iTrans consulting a leading consulting firm specializing in transportation planning and transportation safety to provide recommendations. iTrans conducted traffic counts and reviewed patterns, and then made recommendations based on their findings.
The research progression was very transparent and public. At the beginning of the process the Town of Drumheller informed the Drumheller and District Chamber of Commerce and the Downtown Merchants Association about the project. Once the draft traffic study was completed the Town Council and Administration hosted two public meetings. At these open meetings, iTrans Consulting provided 3 alternatives to improve traffic flow in the downtown core. Based on the input received from the meetings, the plans were modified and another alternative was presented.
The alternate plan provided more parking for the downtown core. After being approached by two land owners Council purchased property which is intended for public parking.
On November 9th 2009, Council voted to implement iTrans recommendation of alternative #1 which best suited the future plans for the town.
Mayor Bryce Nimmo said, “The Downtown Traffic Study is much more than a parking issue. The traffic study addresses safety and traffic flow. The traffic study is an integral tool for the vision of Drumheller and ensures that it meets the long term objectives for development plans. The traffic study will be a component of the Tourism Master Plan which will promote Drumheller as a premier tourist destination. The long term goal is to increase consumer traffic in the downtown core and improve pedestrian and cycling options as part of a more sustainable road network”
This road network will be detailed in the Municipal Sustainability Plan that is under development and expected to be completed by the end of June 2010.