On the south side of the bridge at the end of Betts you will now see a new sign. To the left is the old Blakeburn Road sign, but on the right, bearing what Coalmontians and the Smart family believe to be the rightful name – SMART ROAD.
Walt Smart was born in Coalmont in 1923, ran the Coalmont General Store from 1950-1972 and the Emporium from 1972-1976. At that time he moved five kilometres up the south side of the river and lived there until he passed away in 2010.
The road leading to the house that he built has always borne his name. However, to commemorate this important figure in the history of Coalmont, Diane Sterne thought that the name of the road should be formalized, and so went about to ask the district what they could do.
As it turns out, the Regional District didn’t feel they could do anything without more formal input from the family, and unfortunately the Ministry of Transport will not sign as the road is classified as a forestry access road. We who live here can nevertheless take our own action, and so Diane and Bob went out and purchased a sign which Ernie Rice was kind enough to install.
Although it was generally referred to as Walt Smart Road in the past, it was decided at a Coalmont Community Association meeting that the name be shortened to Smart Road so as to include reference to Mrs. Smart which is what the family indicated Walt would have wanted.