VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – The City of Vancouver is encouraging you to bike, take transit or walk during a two-month closure of 1st Avenue this summer to allow for a major FortisBC project.
“There’s a major construction project underway. 1st Avenue from Nanaimo to Clark will be closed through July and August. And then when Labour Day comes, we’ll be able to re-open it,” explains the City of Vancouver’s General Manager of Engineering Services Jerry Dobrovolny.
The actual closure ends at Woodland Drive, which is two blocks east of Clark Drive. It is set to begin in mid-June.
In addition to that full closure, traffic on 1st Avenue will be down to one lane each way from Nanaimo and Boundary starting late April.
Dobrovolny suggests people plan alternate routes, saying there are plenty available. He also suggests people consider getting out of the car altogether and use transit, cycle, or walk instead.
The city is just facilitating the work. It’s all because of a larger-scale gas line project being done by FortisBC.
“Fortis gas, they’re replacing a gas line along 1st Avenue and a large section of that will actually be closed through the summer months,” says Dobrovolny.
1st Avenue is a major route that leads to Highway 1 near Boundary Road. The approximately 10-block closure will be in both directions.
“Our choice was to try to maintain the road and the project would about six months overall. Or if we did a full closure, the Fortis construction could just take place in July and August,” says Dobrolvolny.
The six-month option was deemed less-palatable by the city.
To compensate, there will be extended rush hour regulations, including things like parking restrictions and bus priorities along both Broadway and Hastings.
“We’ll extend the rush hour regulations in the evening until 7 p.m. and in the morning until 10 a.m. So, an extra half-hour in the morning and an extra half-hour in the evening,” says Dobrovolny.
The project also includes closures in Burnaby.
There will be lane closures on Lougheed Highway between Madison and Bainbridge Avenues. Broadway will be completely closed between Bainbridge and Underhill Avenue.
Expect more lane closures Graveley Street between Boundary and Gilmore, Douglas Road between Gilmore and Madison, and Broadway from Production Way to North Road.
As with all roadwork, the re-opening date is weather-dependent.
Other road closures this summer
Crews will be working on Fraser Street from King Edward to East 33rd Avenue, as well as on Smithe Street between Homer and Beatty Streets.
Work will also be done in the area of Quebec Street and 1st Avenue, as well as 10th Avenue between Cambie and Oak Streets.
There will also be crews on some side streets just northeast of Fraser Street and 41st Avenue.