Lisa Ward (left) and her colleague Amber Winspear have called on the city to improve safety conditions at the intersection of Evergreen Road and Birch Street.

New hospital opening creates traffic hazard for staff at Campbell River medical clinic

Staff at Alder Medical Centre have expressed concern over the safety of pedestrians on nearby streets, claiming that near collisions with traffic are a frequent occurrence for employees and patients travelling between the clinic and the nearby North Island Hospital.

Lisa Ward, office assistant at Alder, told the Mirror that close calls with vehicles and other safety issues have been exacerbated by the opening of the new hospital, which began operating on Sept. 10.

She said that the increased roadside parking along Evergreen Road has greatly reduced visibility for pedestrians near the Birch Street intersection, which includes a number of physicians who must use the intersection daily.

Charlotte Hayman, who also works at Alder as an office assistant, said that the safety risks posed by the increased traffic became evident within a week of the North Island Hospital opening, and that close calls have since become a weekly occurrence for her.

Ward and Hayman contacted a City of Campbell River engineer four weeks ago and was told that the issue would be alleviated once the parking lot planned for the north side of the hospital is complete. Aside from that initial conversation, Ward said she is yet to receive a response from the city.

“I know that there are a lot of traffic issues in the city,” she said. “But I don’t want this to go the same way as the (Ironwood Place) senior facility. I don’t want to have to wait 10 years before anything is done. Something has to change or someone will get hurt or worse. It’s dangerous and scary.”

Hayman expressed a similar concern.

“My concern is that when it gets slippery, drivers won’t be able to stop in time. That hill is horrible during the winter.”

Drew Hadfield, transportation manager for the city, told the Mirror that a full review of the intersection is currently being conducted. While he did not provide a timeline, he said the city is currently considering implementing additional no parking zones, four-way stops and reducing the speed limit along Evergreen.

In fact, at this week’s meeting of city council, Mayor Andy Adams announced he would be putting forth a motion at the next meeting, scheduled for Dec. 11 at 6:30 p.m., that would propose council instruct staff to install a four-way stop at that intersection “immediately.”

Hadfield says that the city has also already taken measures to alleviate similar problems along Birch Street.

“No parking has been re-established on the east side of Birch Street to widen out the road and still provide on street parking along the west side of the roadway,” Hadfield says. “In addition to this, we have eliminated on street parking to the south of the emergency entrance and a couple parking stalls to the north of this entrance to improve the sightline for vehicles leaving the facility. This also provide improved visibility for pedestrians using the sidewalk in this area.”

Hadfield said he expects traffic patterns to change following the removal of the former hospital building and the addition of a new parking area, which would reinstate Second Avenue as the primary point of access for the hospital.

Just Posted

B.C. to move salmon farms out of coastal migration route

Broughton Archipelago plan set to start in spring of 2019

Stranded B.C. trucker writes final wishes before being rescued 3 days later

‘I was just praying someone would come along’

Campbell River School District calls for report on buses and seat-belts

Parents have questions following expose on research around buses and safety

New wind warning for most of Vancouver Island

Forecasters are calling for strong winds up to 90km/h for some areas

Trudeau to make it harder for future PM to reverse Senate reforms

Of the 105 current senators, 54 are now independents who have banded together in Independent Senators’ Group

Boeser has 2 points as Canucks ground Flyers 5-1

WATCH: Vancouver has little trouble with slumping Philly side

Man dies after falling from B.C. bridge

Intoxicated man climbed railing, lost his balance and fell into the water below

B.C. animation team the ‘heart’ of new ‘Spider-Man: Into the Spider-Verse’

The animators, largely based in Vancouver, ultimately came up with a creative technique that is drawing praise

Light at the end of the tunnel for UN climate talks

Meeting in Katowice was meant to finalize how countries report their emissions of greenhouses gases

Janet Jackson, Def Leppard, Nicks join Rock Hall of Fame

Radiohead, the Cure, Roxy Music and the Zombies will also be ushered in at the 34th induction ceremony

Supreme Court affirms privacy rights for Canadians who share a computer

Section 8 of the Charter of Rights and Freedoms protects Canadians against unreasonable search and seizure

‘I practically begged’: Kootenay woman with breast cancer denied referral to Calgary

Breast cancer patient left to fight disease alone after being denied referral to Calgary

21 detained before Paris protests as police deploy in force

There was a strong police presence outside the central Saint Lazare train station, where police in riot gear checked bags

Most Read