A couple in their 70s who can only get to their Squamish home by trespassing across a working rail bridge are renewing their fight to get vehicle access.
“No one has helped us, we’ve had to walk. My wife has had a stroke, I’ve had a heart surgery,” says Walter Smith.
He says it’s been tough since the province removed the only bridge for cars in 2014, but now they are on the mend and looking for action.
“I’d like to get a decision on something. Whether the subdivision is still legal, which it’s never been closed. And whether they’re going to reinstate the original access.
Smith says the responsibility is in the hands of the District, which has had no problem collecting property taxes from them and their neighbours but has failed to provide roads or service.
He says as they get older they want to sell but can’t do anything until this access problem is solved.
The District of Squamish says the situation is complex and involves a number of jurisdictions and a range of considerations.
In an e-mail to CKNW, a spokesperson says the District is facing a lawsuit from affected residents.
Meanwhile, in question period, the Minister responsible, Steve Thompson addressed the problem.
“The bridge did not meet current standards for safety, for safety use for the public. We will continue to work with the residents in the area to make sure we look at future opportunities for access for them.”
Thompson says he also understand current safety concerns with residents needing to walk across a rail bridge to access their homes.
The Ministry adds in the event of an emergency where police, fire or ambulance needs to cross the river, Squamish Search and Rescue is ready to help.