New parking restrictions at Cultus Lake Park include efforts to keep space open for business customers.

Popular Lower Mainland park taking steps to curb illegal parking

Officials from different levels of government are working on Cultus Lake traffic problem

Heavy summertime traffic into Cultus Lake and the Columbia Valley is prompting officials to take some aggressive steps.

Prior to the busy long weekend, electronic signs were installed on roads leading to Cultus Lake, warning motorist of traffic congestion, and the fact vehicles are not permitted to park on Columbia Valley Road.

It’s just the latest step in an effort to strike balance between the needs of residents, the need for safety and accommodation of visitors.

Officials with the Fraser Valley Regional District have been collaborating with local and provincial counterparts to address the issue.

“We have been working with MOTI (Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure) and Cultus Lake Park Board to try to alleviate traffic and parking concerns at Cultus,” said Jennifer Kinneman, spokesperson for FVRD.

They are brainstorming “short, medium and long-term solutions,” she added.

The electronic signs were posted near the Highway 1 off ramp at the Vedder Road overpass, at Vedder Road and Keith Wilson, and at Parmenter Road just before Cultus Lake.

MOTI officials also took to Twitter to warn people of parking at Cultus.

“Cultus Lake goers, please note there is NO PARKING on Columbia Valley Road due to safety concerns, one being blocking emergency vehicles access (lots of signs make it clear),” read the tweet from BC Transportation.

The warnings are just the latest step. In June the Cultus Lake Park Board said vehicles parked illegally would be ticketed and possibly immobilized.

Read More: Illegal vehicles parked at Cultus Lake to get the boot

The board also imposed parking restrictions on the business shopping plaza to deter all-day parking. Motorists who don’t follow the rules, the park board said, “may have their vehicle ticketed, immobilized and/or towed.”

The signs read, “If you leave this facility without your vehicle it will be tagged and/or towed.”

And the issue is not limited to Cultus Lake Park.

On the B.C. Day long weekend, frustration took a nasty turn, according to a former chief of Soowahlie First Nation, Grand Chief Doug Kelly.

A security gate on a road through Soowahlie land that’s popular with people trying to avoid Cultus Lake traffic was locked without band authorization.

“Yesterday afternoon, upon my return home,” said Chief Kelly, “Sherry and I encountered heavy traffic to Cultus Lake. We crossed the Vedder Bridge and turned left to take the backroad home.

“When we arrived at the security gate, installed by the Soowahlie Council, we learned that someone chained and padlocked our gate. “

He said a Soowahlie elder, residents, and many non-members were lined up at the gate.

“When we discovered the issue, the Elder called the Soowahlie maintenance man and he had bolt cutters. He arrived just as we were working to break the padlock with a tire iron,” Kelly said.


@CHWKjourno
jfeinberg@theprogress.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

Just Posted

Rainstorm drenches Lower Mainland as snow falls on the Sea-to-Sky

Heavy rains, snow expected till Friday morning

Community steps up to get Sources’ food bank truck on the road

Individuals, businesses help fix vehicle that had been damaged by theft

Man climbs tree to evade police after Surrey RCMP called to domestic dispute

The man was 60 feet up the tree for hours, according to a Black Press freelancer at the scene

South Surrey grad wins Rhodes Scholarship

$100,000 award means Semi alumna Katherine Reiss will study at Oxford University

Torched-SUV victim ‘had the purest heart,’ says sister

Family of teen found in burned SUV in Surrey appeals for justice

MAP: Christmas light displays in Surrey, Langley and beyond

Send us pictures of your National Lampoon-style lit-up homes, nativity scenes or North Pole playlands

5 to start your day

Torched-SUV victim from Surrey ‘had the purest heart,’ TransLink will bring free WiFi to buses, SkyTrain and Seabus by 2020 and more

‘People talk about deep sadness:’ Scientists study climate change grief

Some call it environmental grief, some call it solastalgia — a word coined for a feeling of homesickness when home changes around you.

As protectors abandon Trump, investigation draws closer

Cohen was sentenced Wednesday to three years in prison for an array of crimes.

Senate delays start of sittings in new home, delaying start of broadcasts

The Senate and House of Commons are moving into temporary homes for the next decade as a result of long-planned and badly needed renovations to the Centre Block.

UK leader seeks EU lifeline after surviving confidence vote

EU leaders gather for a two-day summit, beginning Thursday, which will center on the Brexit negotiations.

French police try to catch attack suspect dead or alive

Local authorities increase death toll to three, including 13 wounded and five in serious condition

BCHL’ers blanked by Russia at World Junior A Challenge

Canada West loses battle of the unbeaten teams in the preliminary round

Second Canadian missing in China after questioning by authorities

Michael Spavor, founder of a non-profit that organizes cultural-exchange trips to North Korea, “is presently missing in China”

Most Read