Committee ponders ways to ease truck traffic

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EDMUNDSTON, N.B. — The consultative committee of Edmundston is calling for more than $35 million in construction to alleviate truck traffic along some of the thoroughfares in the community.

“There’s no magic recipe for getting rid of all the traffic,” says Dr. Roland LeBel, president of the group. “We have an international border, and we’re seeing a strong growth in the number of trucks headed towards the Upper Madawaska.”

The committee looked at 26 different routes for getting rid of some of the congestion in four primary areas of the city. One route has been mapped for each of three areas with the fourth having three potential routes.

One of the proposals is for a $22-million, 22-kilometre-corridor route, which would lead from Berube Street in the northern Saint-Jacques area, to the community of Baker Brook, located west of Edmundston.

According to a study, 673 trucks — or about 27 per cent of Edmundston’s commercial traffic — travel along St. Francis Road (Route 205) that leads into St.-Francois de Madawaska.

Mayor Jacques Martin has already says most of the larger recommendations can’t be completed without funding from the federal and provincial governments and he’s not holding his breath for that to happen.

“If I was at the provincial level,” he says, “it wouldn’t be a priority with everything else that’s going on.”

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