MINISTER OF TRANSPORTATION and Infrastructure Todd Stone

Comox Valley North Connector top Island priority for transportation minister

Transportation Minister Todd Stone says the proposed Comox Valley north connection to the Inland Island Highway will happen.

Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Todd Stone says the proposed project to replace the Dove Creek Bridge and strengthen the Comox Valley’s north connection to the Inland Island Highway will happen.

“The merits of this project are very, very strong, and it’s not a matter of ‘if’ it’s a matter of ‘when,’ ” Stone said Tuesday as he and local government leaders visited the one-way Dove Creek Bridge to talk about the proposed project.

Comox Valley delegates discussed the proposal for a larger bridge and clear north connection to the highway with Stone at September’s Union of B.C. Municipalities convention. Stone said Tuesday the fact that the four main Comox Valley municipalities support the proposed project caught his attention.

“There’s no question we have an immense number of (funding) requests all across the province and certainly here on Vancouver Island,” continued Stone. “But I will say that this particular project is unquestionably at the top of my list for Vancouver Island and it is because it ties very nicely with the hospital expansion taking place.”

Comox Valley Regional District Chair Edwin Grieve added Piercy Road is in good condition and the proposed project would make a stronger connection from it to Veterans Memorial Parkway.

The area of study extends from the corner of Piercy and Dove Creek Roads, (on the west side of the Dove Creek Bridge), east to the parkway. Courtenay Mayor Larry Jangula said he hopes to see a new bridge built north of the existing one and a more direct roadway to the parkway created.

Stone said ministry staff are analyzing the proposed project to define its scope and cost, adding he sees the proposed road and bridgework as a package deal.

“I think the benefit really comes from the straight shot that the entire project provides from the new Island Highway to the future site of the new hospital,” he said. “The bridge is an important piece of that, but the true benefit comes from the entire project so I think … moving forward on this project would involve both the bridge and the road at the same time.”

Grieve and Jangula pointed out the current one-way bridge was built as a temporary measure after a narrow wooden two-lane bridge burned in the early 2000s.

Grieve added having a full-size bridge again would be a boost to area farmers, for example.

“As it is now the farmers can’t even get some of their bigger pieces of equipment over this bridge, and have to go back through Courtenay and cross that way,” he said. “Not only that, but it’s a major artery into our new hospital, straight shot right to the airport, left-hand turn to the ferries, so there’s a lot of really good things that will come out of this.”

Comox Valley MLA Don McRae has been advocating for the project, and his goal is to have it complete by the time the new Comox Valley hospital opens in 2017.

writer@comoxvalleyrecord.com

 

Just Posted

BREAKING: Large structure fire at downtown Courtenay hostel

A fire in downtown Courtenay has engulfed the Cona Hostel at the… Continue reading

Affordable rental housing complex opens in Courtenay

The Braidwood facility will house 34 people at risk of homelessness

Applications open for record bursary, scholarship funding at North Island College

Current and future North Island College students can now apply for scholarships… Continue reading

Second Stage Players present laughter and love in We Are Family

Get your tickets early to see the Evergreen Club’s Second Stage Players’… Continue reading

Stolen Bentley spotted going wrong way down highway found in Summerland

The car has been recorded going the wrong way on the Coquihalla, found two days later

Comox Valley Hospice Society finds new Ocean Front home

Comox Valley Hospice Society (CVHS) recently announced plans to construct a new… Continue reading

1,300 cruise ship passengers rescued by helicopter amid storm off Norway’s coast

Rescue teams with helicopters and boats were sent to evacuate the cruise ship under extremely difficult circumstances

B.C. university to offer first graduate program on mindfulness in Canada

University of the Fraser Valley says the mostly-online program focuses on self-care and well being

Province announces $18.6 million for B.C. Search and Rescue

The funding, spread over three years, to pay for operations, equipment, and training

Late-season wave of the flu makes its round in B.C.

BC Centre for Disease Control reported 50 per cent jump in flu cases in first weeks of March

Tofino’s housing crisis causing some to seek shelter at the local hospital

Tofino’s housing crisis is pushing the town’s ‘hidden homeless’ population into the forefront.

Sentencing judge in Broncos crash calls for carnage on highways to end

Judge Inez Cardinal sentenced Jaskirat Singh Sidhu to eight years

2 fires in Victoria caused by cigarettes prompts warning from deputy fire chief

Two separate fires caused by cigarette butts were avoidable

Most Read