Argo Road Maintenance will assume responsibility for highway maintenance in Service Area 21, which includes provincial roadways for Chetwynd, Dawson Creek and Tumbler Ridge and highways 29, 52 and 97.
Argo’s highway maintenance contract comes into effect Aug. 1, 2019, the day after the existing contract expires. The agreement has a standard term of 10 years with an option for a five-year extension. Argo is also the current highway maintenance contractor for Service Area 15 (Thompson), for which it assumed responsibility Oct. 1, 2018.
The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure’s maintenance contracts for all service areas require high standards and a more proactive approach when a severe weather event occurs. Some improvements over the last contract include:
- increased communication with the public about rapidly changing road conditions during severe weather events and other incidents affecting travel on B.C. roads;
- returning Class A highways, like Highway 97, to bare pavement within 24 hours of a winter weather event, at -9 C or warmer (the previous standard was 48 hours at temperatures of -9 C or warmer);
- increasing patrol frequency to 90 minutes on a Class A highway during a winter storm (the previous standard was four hours);
- increasing the patrol frequency to four hours when a weather event is forecasted (the previous standard was 24 hours).
Twenty-six of the 28 maintenance contracts in the province have been tendered and will be awarded by the end of 2019 through a staggered open-bidding process.
- Private contractors maintain nearly 47,000 kilometres of road and 2,800 bridges in some of the most challenging terrain in Canada.
- Crews apply 750,000 tonnes of winter abrasives and 100,000 tonnes of salt to over 1.2 million kilometres of highways annually throughout B.C.
- The value of these 28 highway maintenance agreements totals approximately $400 million annually.
For more information on the ministry’s highway maintenance contract renewal program, visit: www.gov.bc.ca/highwaymaintenancerenewal
For the most up-to-date highway travel information, visit @DriveBC on Twitter or: www.DriveBC.ca
For more information on the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, visit: http://tranbc.ca/