The cost to widen 240th Street is about $1 million.

The cost to widen 240th Street is about $1 million.

Widening for 240th section

Sidewalks for Selkirk, Walmart improvements.

  • Jul. 30, 2015 8:00 p.m.

Maple Ridge council gave the go-ahead Tuesday to easing a major traffic choke-point in Albion.

Work starts within weeks on widening two blocks of 240th Street, from 102nd to 104th avenues, just north of Albion elementary.

The area now is often congested with school traffic or vehicles moving north from Lougheed Highway.

The cost of the project, awarded to Imperial Paving, is about $1 million, and will involve widening from two to four lanes, building a multi-use path on the east side of 240th Street, sidewalks and street lights.

Drainage and storm sewer work has already been done, allowing construction of the road, which will take about two months.

Once done, the newly built-up area will have a completed four-lane section of road from Lougheed Hwy. to 104th Ave.

Meanwhile, council also OK’d fixing up a road in the downtown.

That entails installing a sidewalk on the south side of Selkirk Avenue, between 225th and 226th streets, and repaving and widening the roadway. Marked cycle paths, landscaping and street furniture will all be part of the $679,000 project, awarded to AC Paving Co., which put in the lowest of three bids. Cost of the project is included in the city’s financial plan.

The intent of the project is to continue to make the downtown more pedestrian friendly. Construction of a sidewalk will make it easier for people to walk between Haney Place Mall and Valley Fair Mall.

Council also approved Walmart’s redecoration plans for the outside of the former Target store at the west end of Haney Place Mall.

Walmart announced recently it was taking over the space after Target closed all its stores earlier this year after a brief venture into the Canadian market.

Council was happy that Walmart said it would improve landscaping and add more trees in the parking lot, following suggestions by the advisory design panel.

Mayor Nicole Read said one resident has suggested that Walmart keep the concrete balls on the sidewalk at the west end of the store and paint them yellow and put smiley faces on them.