The federal government has pledged more than $76 million to help mitigate coastal flooding in Surrey, Semiahmoo First Nation and Delta communities.
A portion of that funding is to be used to build a six-lane bridge that replaces the Nicomekl dam, Bailey bridge and King George Boulevard bridge.
The Serpentine sea dam is to also be replaced, according to an announcement made Friday morning by Delta MP Carla Qualtrough, minister of public services and procurement and accessibility.
Surrey Mayor Doug McCallum, South Surrey-White Rock MP Gordie Hogg and Semiahmoo First Nation Chief Harley Chappell also attended the announcement, which took place at the Nicomekl dam.
Qualtrough said the funding will help implement a “comprehensive flood adaptation strategy” – including dam replacement, major storm sewer upgrades and bridge replacement – that will “increase resilience for over 125,000 residents who are at high risk of coastal flooding and provide significant longterm savings on recovery and replacement costs.”
With Canada’s climate warming twice as fast as the global average, the government is “no longer just talking about how to prevent climate change, but how we need to adapt to this complex new reality,” Qualtrough told the gathering.
“We can no longer stand by and wait to shore up our communities against this increasing threat.”
Altogether, the funds “will help build, rehabilitate and expand 13 infrastructure assets in Surrey and its surrounding communities,” Qualtrough said.
McCallum said the City of Surrey has spent more than $4 milion “over the last couple of years” doing preparation work for projects needed “to control the climate change that’s happening.”
The city is “shovel-ready” for all of the funded projects, McCallum added.
Other Surrey projects included in the funding announcement are an upgrade to 7.5 kilometres of the Colebrook dyke, upgrading two pump stations and building of two new “living dykes.”