Traffic around Yellowknife’s new hottest attraction should calm down over the next few weeks, according to the city, as residents struggle to park and travel around the area near the new KFC and Starbucks.
Alison Harrower, a spokesperson for the City of Yellowknife, said in an email that Municipal Enforcement officers had been on the scene to help ensure people were following the rules and traffic kept flowing.
In a post to Facebook, the City of Yellowknife said residents shouldn’t use the laneway off of Byrne Road, behind the KFC, to park
A number of residents shared their frustrations about the situation in comments on the Facebook post.
“City planners were asleep when they designed the lot for traffic,” wrote Harry Jacobs.
Multiple residents flagged concerns about how the wait for the drive-thru was causing traffic delays on Old Airport Road, as well as preventing other customers from parking in the parking lot to enter either restaurant.
“We haven’t gone to KFC yet because the line ups are ridiculous and the whole getting in and out was not planned properly. How do you get in if you want to park and go inside?” wrote Jackie Wouters Paul.
Harrower said traffic has started to drop since the restaurants initially opened in the first week of May. She added the traffic levels should decline further to be at levels that had been anticipated in a traffic impact survey that was submitted as part of the application for the development permit.
“A high volume of traffic was always expected during the opening weeks as Starbucks and KFC were eagerly anticipated by Yellowknifers,” she said. “The left turn lane from Old Airport Road to Range Lake Road was lengthened, and a right turn lane was created from Old Airport Rd into the new development to minimize disruption on street traffic.”
Harrower added the city had budgeted $60,000 for a Range Lake Area Development Plan, which would factor in the traffic situation when making decisions about development in the area.