B.C.’s Minister of Transportation offered updates about two key Surrey projects in a speech to Surrey Board of Trade (SBOT) members on Tuesday, Jan. 25.
For the new Surrey-Langley SkyTrain line extension, Rob Fleming said project officials are working to complete technical requirements, environmental assessment and Indigenous public engagements.
“Work is happening to relocate utilities along the Fraser Highway, and the City of Surrey is widening sections of the highway to accommodate the future guideway,” he noted.
“And I want to give a shout-out to Mayor McCallum and his entire council team for making that such a priority in getting that pre-work part of the project (done) so quickly.”
The $4-billion project should be completed by 2028, he added.
“That’s two full years earlier than originally contemplated,” Fleming said. “Building it in one phase instead of two, not only are we building an additional nine kilometres and making a much bigger project, we’re saving an estimated $500-$600 million by doing it in one phase.”
More details about cost and “overall approach” will be available “in a couple of quarters, later this year,” he said.
“It’s going to transform the way people move around the region, there’s no question about that,” Fleming continued. “It’s very exciting to think about the connections between Surrey and Langley. When this is completed you’ll be able to commute from King George Station in Surrey to the end station in Langley, eight stations further, in just 23 minutes.”
Details about the 16-kilometre SkyTrain line extension are posted to surreylangleyskytrain.ca.
Video of Surrey Board of Trade’s online-only event, focused on “Surrey transportation priorities,” is posted to Surrey Board of Trade’s YouTube channel.
“Bridge foundation construction is well underway, pile-driving for the main tower foundation is complete, and work is progressing on the installation of reinforced concrete shells around each pile before our crews pour concrete to deliver the in-river foundation,” Fleming explained.
“As we deliver this project, we’re strongly committed to using local services and supporting local businesses,” he said, noting local restaurants and catering, and print shops for signage.
The new crossing over Fraser River, from Surrey to New Westminster, is anticipated to create close to 7,000 direct and indirect jobs, Fleming noted.
“The new bridge will continue to connect to King George Boulevard, and a new off-ramp will connect to the westbound Highway 17, which is a critical link, and as part of the project Highway 17 will be grade-separated over the Old Yale Road, so an overpass that will improve traffic on Highway 17.”