Friday, October 03, 2008

COQUIHALLA TOLL BOOTHS BEING DEMOLISHED

DEMOLITION BEGINS ON
COQUIHALLA TOLL PLAZA

The process to decommission the toll booths on the Coquihalla Highway is underway, Premier Gordon Campbell announced today.

“Removing the tolls on the Coquihalla Highway puts money back in the pockets of the commuters, tourists and truck drivers who regularly drive this highway,” said Premier Campbell. “This will translate into savings of hundreds of dollars each year for the average regular user, and thousands of dollars for the truck drivers who rely on this important transportation route.”

Over the next few days, the 13 toll booths on the northbound and southbound lanes will be stripped of materials. Crews will also be cutting support beams in preparation for the removal of the canopy and concrete booths. The demolition is expected to take several weeks.

After the booths are removed, portions of the road will need to be paved and marked. Once complete, traffic will flow uninterrupted through the site, with no stop necessary between Kamloops and the Lower Mainland.

“The tolls served their purpose, and paid for a highway that literally opened up B.C.’s Interior,” said Transportation and Infrastructure Minister Kevin Falcon. “Removing the toll booths will allow drivers to maintain a normal pattern of driving along this stretch of highway.”

Where possible, materials from the toll booths will be recycled or reused. All electronic equipment, cameras, computers and related materials have been removed and those that can’t be reused will be put up for auction. Structural components, like steel beams and trusses, will be sold. Other equipment, like the gate arms, will be reused elsewhere.

Motorists are reminded that there is a traffic pattern change entering and leaving the toll plaza on the Coquihalla Highway, and minor traffic delays may be necessary as demolition proceeds. The speed limit through the toll plaza is currently posted at 30 km/h.


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