Friday, September 19, 2014

BRIDGE TO GABRIOLA STUDIED


Bridge would replace existing service

VICTORIA – In response to a petition signed by a significant number of Gabriola Island residents, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure will study the feasibility of a fixed link between Gabriola Island and Vancouver Island that would replace existing ferry service.

This feasibility study is also consistent with government’s goals of connecting coastal communities in a sustainable manner, and finding innovative ways to reduce the upward pressure on coastal ferry fares.

The ministry will retain an independent consultant to examine potential locations for a fixed link, provide cost estimates for a fixed link, and undertake a cost comparison between a fixed link and the existing ferry service. The consultant will not be assessing the level of public support for a bridge.

The feasibility study will get underway this fall and is expected to be completed in spring 2015. The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure will post the study’s full terms of reference once the consultant is in place.

Gabriola Island is home to approximately 4,000 full-time residents. BC Ferries’ Route 19, between Gabriola Island and Nanaimo Harbour, carried 341,000 vehicles in 2013-14.

 “Gabriola Island residents have petitioned the provincial government to do this study so that any future discussion about a fixed link can be based on current, factual information. On that basis, and in consideration of our vision that coastal communities are connected in a sustainable manner, we’ll assess the feasibility of a fixed link between the two islands.”  Todd Stone Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure




Comment: Aren't BC Ferries in the process of taking bids to build a new Gabriola Ferry Terminal? Should that be put on hold until this bridge study is complete?

allvoices

2 comments:

  1. People knowingly move to an island because they know it's an island; the solitude, trees, wildlife, beaches - away from the rest of society.

    So why in the heck do some then want a bridge built bringing every Tom, Dick and Harry?

    ReplyDelete
  2. The editorial in the local daily paper likely provides the explanation because 600 residents signing a petition shouldn't by itself trigger this expensive study. According to the Daily News, this could be all about providing the long-stalled Cable Bay development with an access road. Money talks.

    ReplyDelete

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