Lacombe train whistles could be no more, pending grant funding

Whistle cessation has been a community want for many years

A byproduct of new Transport Canada safety regulations could mean that end of train whistles in Lacombe is nigh.

Mayor Grant Creasey said ending train whistles in Lacombe have long been talked about.

“I can remember as a small child in this community people were talking about this same thing,” he said. “It has been going on for an awful long time and all we can do is look to other communities who have had success one way or another.

“It is a balancing act trying to please the majority of the people in the public and still keeping in mind the availability of funds.”

Whistle cessation as long been a cause of angst among many of Lacombe’s populace and probable grant funding intended for increased safety could mean that the over $500,000 ($72,500 for the Leduc Line, $507,500 for the Bretcher Line) required to meet safety requirements and the whistle cessation byproduct is in sight.

Lacombe council therefore passed a motion to include safety improvements and whistle cessation in the 2020 and/or 2021 City budget, assuming grant funding is available. The project is eligible for up to 80 per cent funding from Transport Canada.

“I think it is important to keep in mind that it (whistle cessation) was not the driving force behind this, Mayor Grant Creasey said. “It is more of a community safety concern. It just so happens that those two items seem to be so intermingled that while you are pursuing the safety standards of the 2021 upgrade, you are by default meeting the standards of whistle cessation. That is an added bonus for some.”

Not knowing the exact dollar amount the project would cost can be problematic, which is why council worded the motion to be flexible based on cost.

“It is unfortunate, but that is why we worded it so we have the option to continue or cease pursuit of this should funds not be realized,” he said.

Creasey, when asked regarding the diverting the rail lines similar to what Red Deer did in the 1990s on Taylor Dive, said the cost of a large-scale project like that is prohibitive.

“I think that was a very successful move for them,” he said. “They had a lot of viable properties realized from moving the railway out of of that community. In our instance, the cost to relocate it far outweighs the overall benefit.

“In a perfect world, if we could just put it underground or something that would be wonderful but when a person examines the cost — it is just not feasible to do.”



todd.vaughan@lacombeexpress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Lacombe County and WCPS announce School Resource Officer partnership

County assumed the role SRO for schools in Alix, Bentley, Clive and Eckville

PHOTO: Lacombe’s Cilantro and Chive supports Red Deer Hospice Society

Burger of the Month continues to support local charities

Lacombe Raiders pillage Hunting Hills 30-6

Raiders carry 2-0 record into Stettler game next week

WATCH: Enhanced Emergency Department opens at Lacombe Hospital

$3.1 million facility jointly funded by AHS, Lacombe Health Trust

Rick Mercer calls out Conservative candidate in B.C. for fake meme

‘Not true. All fake. Please Stop,’ tweeted Rick Mercer in response

Sylvan Lake man charged with wife’s murder

Satnam Singh Sandhu, 41, will appear in Red Deer Provincial Court on Sept. 18

National weather forecasters predict average fall, cold winter

The Weather Network says precipitation will about average in most parts of Canada

Conservatives promise tax cut that they say will address Liberal increases

Scheer says the cut would apply to the lowest income bracket

Fewer trees, higher costs blamed for devastating downturn in B.C. forestry

Some say the high cost of logs is the major cause of the industry’s decline in B.C.

Federal food safety watchdog says batch of baby formula recalled

The agency says it’s conducting a food safety investigation

Most Read