Concerns of residents of Cherry Brook mobile home park in South Surrey – who feared access to their homes would be limited by a planned Highway 99-16 Avenue interchange – have been heard.
Updated plans for the interchange, which include a four-lanes-with-median expansion of 16 Avenue in the eastward approach to the bridge, now also feature a left-turn lane into the park at 162 Street, according to Richard Ahrend, senior design engineer for project consultants R.F. Binnie and Associates.
“The plans now include left-turn lanes on either side of the bridge,” Ahrend said, adding the design updates have received approval by the City of Surrey, which is partnering with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure in the new interchange.
Cherry Brook residents had expressed reservations about the plans at a Nov. 1 open house on the project conducted by Binnie at Earl Marriott Secondary, noting the limited access posed potential fire and safety problems, as well as the possibility of increased traffic by residents through the adjacent Breakaway Bays mobile home park.
Ahrend said public consultation was intended to identify such local issues and see whether solutions could be incorporated in the design.
Construction of the $24-million project is expected to last four to six months, starting early next year, with the new interchange projected to be in operation by the fall.
Work is to include the demolition of the existing 16 Avenue bridge, the building of a new four-lane bridge with traffic signals at each end, and on and off ramps connecting the new bridge to Highway 99 in all four quadrants.
Short-term disruption of local traffic will be a fact of life until the work is complete, the ministry acknowledges.
During construction, traffic across Highway 99 will be detoured south to 8 Avenue, via King George Boulevard and 168 Street.
Intermittent night-time closures of one set of lanes on Highway 99 will also take place, although traffic on the highway is expected to be unaffected during daytime hours.
According to the ministry, benefits of the plan include better access to Highway 99, improved connectivity between South Surrey, Langley and Abbotsford and better accommodation of increasing cross-border traffic.
The ministry also sees the plan resulting in a partial easing of truck travel on municipal roads, particularly 32 Avenue.