The Nass River crossing is about to improve for drivers, with construction of a new two-lane bridge scheduled to replace the existing single-lane timber structure.
“The replacement of the Nass River Bridge will increase safety for local residents, help regional businesses transport their products more efficiently and contribute to long-term prosperity within the community for years to come,” said Amarjeet Sohi, federal Minister of Infrastructure and Communities. “I am very pleased to see this project advancing. Smart infrastructure investments like these improve the quality of life for communities and help to increase sustainable economic development.”
The new bridge, located on Highway 37, approximately 75 kilometres east of Stewart, will be built just upstream from the current structure. The two lanes will be able to accommodate heavier commercial vehicles, and will have shoulders for pedestrians and cyclists.
“Replacing this single-lane bridge from 1972 with a new two-lane bridge will greatly improve safety and mobility for people in the region,” said Claire Trevena, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “The new bridge will be built to modern standards and help keep traffic flowing smoothly along Highway 37, a key north-south connection for British Columbians and our resource sectors.”
As part of the project, approximately one kilometre of Highway 37 will be realigned on each end of the bridge to improve sightlines. The new design will allow traffic to cross the bridge deck at 90 kilometres per hour, instead of the original 30 km/h speed limit.
In addition, the rest area at the east end of the bridge will be relocated and will include a new pedestrian viewpoint and new washroom facilities. A left-turn lane and a deceleration lane will provide safe access.
“Replacing this bridge is vital to support the region’s growing forestry and mining industries,” said Minister of Forests, Lands, Natural Resource Operations and Rural Development and MLA for Stikine, Doug Donaldson. “It will also benefit residents of the surrounding communities and tourists by improving access to recreational activities in northern British Columbia.”
A successful bidder has been selected and the ministry is in the process of awarding the construction contract. The total value of the project, including planning, design and engineering work and construction, is $24 million.
The Government of Canada is contributing $10.7 million to this project. The Government of British Columbia is covering the remaining costs.
Construction will begin in spring 2018, with completion scheduled in fall 2019. During this time, the existing bridge will remain in use. Drivers are advised to follow instructions of traffic control personnel and obey the construction zone speed limit.
The ministry is committed to rehabilitating highways and bridges throughout British Columbia, and to building new infrastructure where it is needed. The B.C. government will continue to invest in transportation infrastructure for the safe, reliable and efficient movement of people and goods.
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