41 km of regional roads to see repairs
The B.C. government today announced a raft of road resurfacing projects for the Southern Interior that will cover more than 300 kilometres of highways and side roads in 2020.
Of that total, 41 km of roadwork will be completed in or near the East Kootenay, consisting of 23 km of hot-in-place resurfacing of Highway 93/95 between Windermere and Radium Hot Springs and in the Golden area and 18 kilometres of Highway 95A resurfacing from Cranbrook to Marysville, including some side roads.
Hot-in-place resurfacing is a made-in-B.C. process that involves repurposing the existing asphalt by heating, softening and blending it with a small amount of new asphalt before reapplying it to the road surface. This method extends the life of the surface, is faster, saves resources and lowers greenhouse gas emissions, explained a Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure media release.
“All these paving projects will make a big difference to residents as well as those who travel through the region,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “Moving forward with highway improvement projects means we are providing jobs for British Columbians, but in all of these projects, safety comes first.”
B.C.’s provincial health officer (PHO) has directed construction employers to take all necessary precautions to minimize the risks of COVID-19 transmission and illness to themselves and their employees. This includes ensuring workers maintain physical distance with a minimum of two metres apart from each other, both in the course of their duties and during breaks. Anyone exhibiting COVID-19 like symptoms will be directed to self-isolate at home for at least 10 days.
Other major resurfacing projects for the southern interior this spring and summer include:
* Highway 3 near Castlegar – sealcoating approximately 25 kilometres of Highway 3, Bombi Pass between the Ootischenia weigh scales and Beaver Creek bridge;
* Highway 5 near Barriere – resurfacing approximately 16 kilometres of Highway 5 from McLure Ferry Road to Louis Creek Bridge;
* Highway 97A and side roads near Salmon Arm – approximately 13 kilometres of resurfacing on Highway 97A from Enderby to Grindrod, along with portions of Mabel Lake Road, Trinity Valley Road and Springbend Road; and
* Side roads near Creston – approximately 24 kilometres of side road resurfacing in the Lister area, as well as some of Highway 21, including patch paving for five kilometres near the Canada-U.S. border.
More than $85 million is being invested in highway and side road improvements in the southern Interior in 2020.
The following projects make up the rest of what will be resurfaced in the region this year:
* Highway 3A near Nelson (20 kilometres) – resurfacing from Kootenay Lake Bridge to Taghum Bridge and side roads;
* Highway 5 near Merritt (10 kilometres) – resurfacing from Great Bear Snowshed to Dry Gulch Bridge;
* Highway 20 near Williams Lake (28 kilometres) – sealcoating from the Sheep Creek Brake Check to Hodgson Road;
* Highway 97 near Quesnel (33 kilometres) – intermittent resurfacing between McLeese Lake and Dale Lake;
* Highway 97 near Vernon (10 kilometres) – highway resurfacing from north of 43rd Avenue to College Way and along Old Kamloops Road; and
* Highway 97C near Merritt (12 kilometres) – mill-and-fill resurfacing from the Highway 5A Junction (Aspen Grove) to Pothole Creek Bridge.
While highways and roads remain open, the PHO recommends people stay close to home and avoid any non-essential travel.
As these resurfacing projects are taking place, drivers can expect minor delays and, at times, single-lane alternating traffic. The ministry appreciates people’s patience during this resurfacing work. Drivers are reminded to obey construction zone speed limits and the direction of traffic control personnel.
Lead image: Highway 93/95 running north toward Radium Hot Springs from the Invermere crossroads. e-KNOW file photo