A pickup truck negotiates the intersection of Highway 4 west from the southbound off-ramp of Highway 19 at Qualicum Beach. The yield sign on the right turn will be replaced with an acceleration lane to be constructed in the next month. — J.R. Rardon photo

Qualicum-Alberni interchange to get upgrade

Acceleration lane will be added to Hwy 4 west

Traffic exiting Highway 19 southbound on the way to Port Alberni and Tofino should have an easier transition starting in October.

The Ministry of Transportation announced Thursday that construction is about to begin on a new acceleration lane that will improve safety for motorists when they are exiting Highway 19 southbound, so they can merge onto Highway 4 westbound near the Qualicum Beach exit.

Currently, the southbound off-ramp ends at a traffic signal light for motorist turning left to Qualicum Beach, and a right-turn lane with a yield for those turning west on Highway 4. The new acceleration lane will allow westbound traffic on Highway 4 to make the turn and merge into the flow of traffic coming from Qualicum Beach.

Hazelwood Construction Services Inc. was the successful bidder and has been awarded a $403,260 contract for the project, MOT stated in a written release.

Work is expected to begin after Labour Day and will be completed by October 2017.

During construction, the ministry says it will ensure traffic delays are kept to a minimum, particularly during peak periods. Motorists are advised to pay special attention to signs because of changing traffic patterns, obey traffic control personnel, and watch for workers throughout the project.

For up-to-date traffic advisories, please check: www.drivebc.ca.

— NEWS Staff and

Ministry of Transportation release