The George Massey tunnel is considered B.C.’s worst traffic congestion point, and unable to withstand a major earthquake. (Black Press files)

VIDEO: What’s plan B for Massey tunnel, opposition asks

Premier John Horgan wants ‘biggest benefit to public’

Now that a 10-lane bridge replacement for the George Massey tunnel is off the table, opposition critics want to know where the B.C. NDP government’s plan to deal with the gridlock and earthquake risk is going.

The tunnel under the Fraser River is a main route for the Lower Mainland and Vancouver Island visitors, and Delta South MLA Ian Paton notes that the traffic congestion is getting worse with the return of long, rainy nights.

Paton asked Transportation Minister Claire Trevena in the B.C. legislature Tuesday for an update on a “technical review” of options that she announced nearly two months ago. None was forthcoming.

“We acknowledge there is a problem on the Highway 99 corridor, and we’re going to be addressing that,” Trevena replied. “We want to make sure that we are looking at all of the options as well as engaging with the Lower Mainland elected officials who were shut out by the last government.”

Paton said there were 250 meetings and five options presented on the previous government’s plan to build a Port Mann-style crossing over the Fraser River, with the bridge option the clear favourite.

“I will remind the minister that the George Massey tunnel is once again the worst bottleneck in this province, and 80,000 people a day are stuck in traffic and rush hour in the tunnel,” Paton said.

Premier John Horgan said most Lower Mainland mayors had other priorities than the Massey crossing. The NDP campaigned against the Massey project in the last election, arguing that a replacement for the aging Pattullo bridge is a higher priority.

Finance Minister Carole James has confirmed that the budget for the bridge project has been redirected, with $66 million spent by the province on engineering and site work, and another $25 million by B.C. Hydro to reroute power.


@tomfletcherbc
tfletcher@blackpress.ca

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Parksville residents hear compelling tales from recovering young addicts

Speakers emphasize need for detox and treatment centre, shelter in the area

Burning Thanksgiving question: Turkey or ham?

PQB notables also talk best side dishes

Jordie Lunn, world-renowned mountain biker from Parksville, dies in accident

The 36-year-old was with friends trail riding in Cabo San Lucas when the accident happened

Island man restores 1962 Qualicum Beach fire truck he bought for $1

Vintage vehicle in working order and ready to hit the road

VIDEO: Langley woman’s security camera records its own theft

Langley family discovers early morning grab was recorded

Canadian Snowbirds plane crashes before air show in Atlanta

Pilot lands safely after ejecting from jet

Map on Elections Canada website sends Nanaimo-Ladysmith voters to landfill

Address for polling station correct, but Google Map address differs

1/3 of Canadian men won’t share their feelings for fear of being ‘unmanly’: report

Fifty-nine per cent of men said society expects them to be ‘emotionally strong and not show weakness’

Share crash data, private insurers tell David Eby, ICBC

B.C. monopoly makes drivers retrieve their own records

B.C. VIEWS: Wolf kill, not backcountry bans, saving caribou

B.C.’s largest herds turn the corner from extinction

Pearson nets shootout winner as Canucks clip Flyers 3-2

Vancouver picks up second straight home win

BC Children’s Hospital launches 2 new virtual care sites bringing total to 19 across province

Provincial initiative allows pediatric patients to see health specialists through video

Most Read