The twinning of the Trans-Canada Highway in Langley is still in developmental stages, but some residents are saying the expansion can not come soon enough.
Highway One will be widened to six lanes between 216th and 264th Streets in Langley through a project adding HOV lanes and upgrading interchanges.
Chrissy Skingsley, a Langley commuter who uses the highway to get to work in Aldergrove, called the 264 Street exit a hazard.
“Semi-trucks, cars, and big SUV’s push their luck and try to come in, and when someone isn’t going to let them, there is slamming on breaks and almost accidents,” Skingsley told the Aldergrove Star.
First announced in 2017 by the former B.C. Liberal government, the project was then put on hold by the NDP government until spring of 2019.
Langley Township Mayor Jack Froese said both interchanges on that stretch of road – 232nd Street and 264th Street – were expected to see upgrades.
Both are old-style interchanges that haven’t changed since they were built in the 1960s.
”I understand being nice every now and then by letting them into the lane when going over the overpass, but there is always almost accidents and yelling every morning,” Skingsley explained.
The concern comes after another Trans-Canada Highway, the 216th Street interchange, officially opened in early September – which sparked both protest from some Walnut Grove residents and applause from bikers and truckers.
The interchange has already been the site of an early morning collision.
“The sign when coming off the freeway is a yield not a merge,” Skingsley said, advising people to use caution when using the exit. “When 264th Street is backed up and so is the turning lane on 56 Avenue to go over the overpass, people aren’t going to let others in.“
A media spokesperson for the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure said the widening project is currently in the design phase and that the ministry is engaging with regional stakeholders as it develops the project design.
Following completion of design and engagement, construction is expected to get underway in late 2021.
Funding to help restart the transportation sector amid the COVID-19 pandemic was announced by the provincial government, but nothing was specifically announced for this Trans-Canada project.
The ministry also noted that COVID-19 has not altered the schedule for the twinning project either.
The 10-kilometre long project is estimated to cost $235 million and will be jointly funded, with the federal government contributing $108,963,550, the province $99,429,217, and the Township $27,133,333.
The project is expected to be completed by 2025.
People can keep up to date with BC road projects by visiting www2.gov.bc.ca/gov/content/transportation-projects.
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