The City of Edmonton has made some changes to improve road conditions during the winter.
The most notable change is using an anti-icing solution that will be used on almost half of Edmonton’s major roads this winter.
The anti-icing pilot project was approved by city council this summer. The city says many other Canadian cities are already using the calcium chloride.
The project expands upon a pilot conducted in February and March 2017. The city said the anti-icing solution will be applied to about 3,000 kilometres of road this year, or about 40 per cent of Edmonton’s arterial and collector roads.
There has been concern the solution will cause vehicles to rust, but the city said there are anti-coercive agents to prevent rusting.
The city will still use a mix of sand and salt but less of it than ever before.
“We’re trying to get away from having all the sand on the road because you have to put the sand on the road, then you also have to pick it up in the spring, then you have to either recycle it or dispose of the material,” Janet Tecklenborg, with the City of Edmonton, said.
“With the bare road, it’s actually safer for stopping than it is using sand.”
The anti-icing agent is only used up to a temperature of -25 C. The product, which is applied in a thin layer once per snowfall, prevents the snow from sticking to the pavement, the city said. The product is meant to make it easier for crews to remove snow from the streets.
The cost of the program is expected to be equivalent to other years.
The city is also making a concerted effort to plow roads quicker. The goal is to have main roads down to bare pavement within 12 hours after the snowfall.
In the past, the city waited until at least three centimetres of snow fell before plowing.
— With files from Kendra Slugoski