New wrinkle in province’s plan to fund New West-Coquitlam bridge replacement

Vancouver, BC, Canada / (CKNW AM) AM980

The province has promised to fund a temporary bridge between New Westminster and Coquitlam, but the mayor of New West says a catch on that deal will cause traffic jams.

Wayne Wright says the Ministry of Transportation had already given rights for the bridge to temporarily replace the Bailey bridge, so he was surprised to see the letter from minister Todd Stone today saying the deal was off unless New West put in a second single-lane bridge.

Wright, who has long asked for only one-lane because he argues traffic would increase with two, says he’s not sure what to expect next.

“We’re not afraid of not getting this bridge, okay? Maybe there’s no bridge. We may be even happier with no bridge, if that’s what they want.”

Transportation Minister Todd Stone says two lanes is safest.

“The bottle needs to be uncorked. This is a major, major bottle neck.  Again, between 9,000 and 10,000 people who are moving through this corridor and over this alternating Bailey bridge every single day of the week.”

Stone says the government’s package is worth $2 million for the two loaner bridges, and $800,000 from Coquitlam for road work and analysis.

With this new wrinkle in the plan, Wright says it likely will be the New Year before traffic can cross from New West to Coquitlam.

The old Bailey bridge was deemed unsafe and shut down in February.

Comments

  1. Oh for heaven sakes; that area needs, at minimum, a two lane bridge. Why on Earth are we wasting money on a single-lane bridge? Just bite the bullet and build something proper for once in our lives. Instead of paying for something; then paying for something again in a few years down the road. As for New Westminster, it’s time the Provincial Government said, “tough beans, we’re building the two lane bridge; and to hell with you”. If you wait for New Westminster – whose Mayor and Council have been obstructionist on just about every single transportation project ever proposed – to agree to the terms, then you may as well spend the money somewhere else – as they will not be in support of anything.

    • Have you driven over this bridge? Do you notice the 5 active CN rail lines and skytrain line (which was position to stop any reasonable attempt to build a bridge across those lines.

      What I still can’t quite understand understand is why did Coquitlam build their road knowing the problems on the New West side. I know Coquitlam has a plan for New West, bulldozing down a bunch of homes on the New West side, encircling others inside cloverleaf exchanges but I think any reasonable person might see the issues with that plan.

    • No kidding, just build the thing already. The other cities around New West aren’t refusing to take its outgoing traffic, why is New West being so un-neighbourly?

  2. I can’t believe tody, one of the “brightest and the best” would have come up with a wrinkle after he said “OK”. Sure not like one of the LIE BERALS to go back on their word. As snookums would say “YA NO”!

    • Gridlock? Then welcome to Metro.

      New West should either join the team, or get out. And that means getting out of all Metro services. Don’t like the traffic? No problem – send it all east or west. And then explain to your merchants why they have no business.

      New West Council is completely clueless.

  3. No matter what type of traffic or where they go between Burnaby, Richmond, Surrey, Coquitlam, and other Municipalities, there is no doubt the City of New Westminster will be affected.
    I think New West needs to get their act together and start some serious road and traffic planning pretty darn quick. Traffic is not going to stop any time soon.

    The notion of a one lane bridge in this day in age just does not work! Build the two lane bridge at minimum.

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