Residents of the Okotoks neighbourhood of Cimarron have traffic woes just like many other Canadian communities. Vehicles speeding through otherwise quiet streets; too much vehicular traffic and impatient drivers taking short cuts through the neighbourhood enroute to urgent matters elsewhere in town.
Some streets in Cimarron, such as Cimarron Blvd, are so busy at peak times that some residents can’t get out of their driveways in a timely manner. At a recent meeting organized by the Town of Cochrane, Cimarron home owners shared their experiences with wild traffic.
Short cuts through the neighbourhood were experienced more by residents of Cimarron Estates. This is because motorists use Cimarron Estates Drive as a shorter way to get from Southridge Drive to 32 Street. Cimarron Blvd has high volume, speeding, noisy vehicles and motorists making unsafe or unpredictable U-turns.
Solutions offered by those gathered at the Feb. 25 meetings included more frequent patrols and enforcement by Okotoks RCMP, four-way stops at intersections and traffic measures to deter motorists from using Cimarron Blvd as it crosses Highway 7. One resident has called for barriers.
The Town of Okotoks is open to residents’ concerns and to increase home owner engagement, it promises to conduct a survey online to get more feedback. The survey should be live by the end of March 2016 and will be open for feedback until the end of May.
A community advisory group will also be formed to create a vision for Cimarron and to create the questions which will be part of the online survey. It will then examine the feedback provided by answers given during the survey.
A study for the purpose of calming traffic specifically on Cimarron Blvd was previously recommended and some changes were implemented on this roadway such as brighter lines painted on the roads, better visibility for motorists and the addition of pedestrian lights. A Town of Okotoks councilor admits that these measures were easy fixes and in looking long term, more dramatic changes are required.
More stop signs on Cimarron Blvd would also provide better access for residents who live on the south side of this road, providing more opportunities to turn left off the boulevard to get out of the community.
This residential community is located on the south eastern edge of the Town of Okotoks along the scenic Sheep River Escarpment. At 640 acres, this neighbourhood is one of the largest communities in Okotoks. Established in 1997, build-out of Cimarron continues in this community of starter homes, move-up models and country estate homes. The neighbourhood’s primary selling feature is the landscape, with Alberta’s amazing Foothills to the west and the snow-covered Rockies rising above them. Estate homes along the environmental reserve have exceptional prairie and mountain views.
There are three schools within walking distance in Cimarron. The neighbourhood has excellent shopping and is close to a couple of golf courses and rec centres. Okotoks is a town of 25,000 just 18 km south west of Calgary.