City considers closing ‘spaghetti intersection’ near downtown Edmonton

This intersection in Edmonton's Rossdale neighbourhood could be closed if city council decides to close southwest traffic on Rossdale Road. Google Street View

The city is considering closing a part of Rossdale Road and an associated intersection — one the project manager in charge of the initiative describes as a “spaghetti intersection.”

“Where 103 Street, Bellamy Hill (Road and) Rossdale Road converge, it is a very unsafe intersection for pedestrians as well as vehicles because of so many stop signs, yield signs and vehicles trying to go in different directions,” said Satya Gadidasu.

Gadidasu said the road is one of many choices that get to the same destination.

“(Closing the road) will help alleviate some of the driver confusion and uncertainty of going through that intersection by taking this redundant street away,” he said.

The City of Edmonton is proposing closing this portion of Rossdale Road, a move it says will make the intersection with Bellamy Hill Road and 103 Street safer and less confusing. City of Edmonton
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Ward O-day’min Coun. Anne Stevenson said the area is “very complex and difficult to navigate.”

“If you’re coming from the east and travelling west, you have to cross four lanes and stop in this small island, and then merge into traffic that’s coming from behind you in a very strange angle,” said Stevenson.

“It’s a route that I take frequently and it’s hard every time.”

Southwest-bound traffic on the portion of Rossdale Road that connects to 97 Avenue would be rerouted if city council agrees to close the road following a public hearing on Monday.

There are multiple options to reroute traffic should the closure go through: 99 Avenue to either 103 Street or Bellamy Hill Road, both of which link up to 97 Avenue; via 101 Street; or by taking the James MacDonald Bridge before crossing the Low Level Bridge.

Traffic heading northwest would have the same route it does currently.

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Gadidasu said a new intersection with lights and a left turn lane would be installed at 99 Avenue and Bellamy Hill Road.

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The road is being reimagined because it’s due for rehabilitation, Gadidasu said.

The main concern from residents was how they would access their homes if the road is closed. Gadidasu said people living north of 97 Avenue would need to take McDougall Hill instead of Grierson Hill.

As for traffic congestion concerns, the city said the portion of road is not heavily used and a traffic study showed there wouldn’t be major changes.

“I think what’s really important to remember as well is that the east-west connection isn’t being removed entirely, it’s just being moved a bit further north, so people can still take that very similar route,” said Stevenson.

Stevenson said her office hasn’t received many concerns about the closure, but her mind remains open heading into the public hearing on Monday.

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