White Rock council has confirmed the west-bound lane of Marine Drive will be closed down by June 7 to allow increased seating space for restaurants - but has also said the temporary measure will last only until full-capacity inside dining is permitted by provincial health orders. (File photo)

White Rock council has confirmed the west-bound lane of Marine Drive will be closed down by June 7 to allow increased seating space for restaurants - but has also said the temporary measure will last only until full-capacity inside dining is permitted by provincial health orders. (File photo)

White Rock’s Marine Drive one-way to take effect June 7

City council measure will be lifted if full-capacity indoor dining returns

White Rock council has recommitted to its plan to temporarily close one lane of Marine Drive, turning it into a one-way, as a measure to help provide more space for restaurants during COVID-19 indoor seating restrictions.

READ MORE: White Rock council votes to make Marine Drive one-way route

The plan is to be implemented by Monday, June 7.

The 5-2 vote in favour came during council’s regular virtual meeting Monday night (May 31), after Coun. Helen Fathers, who had previously voted for the closure, moved to rescind the original motion made at the May 11 meeting.

Only Fathers and Coun. David Chesney voted in favour of rescinding, with Mayor Darryl Walker and Couns. Christopher Trevelyan, Anthony Manning, Erika Johanson and Scott Kristjanson voting in the negative.

Council added a new-proviso to the one-way, however – endorsing a motion from Manning that the lane be re-opened as soon as provincial health authorities allow full-capacity indoor dining again, which may happen as soon as July, dependent on COVID figures.

Fathers said the lane closure, which will transform Marine Drive into an eastbound one-way, and detour westbound traffic down Columbia Avenue and Victoria Avenue, needed reconsideration in light of opposition from residents.

READ MORE: White Rock’s Marine Drive lane closure awaits traffic plan

“It was a difficult decision, like I expressed in the original conversation,” Fathers said, noting that she “started off as a no-vote, then switched to a yes-vote.”

“I’ve never received so many emails from residents who are, quite frankly, not in support of it,” she added. “In the whole time I’ve been a councillor, apart from the towers uptown in White Rock, (I’ve not seen such) a significant amount of negative feedback.”

Fathers also noted last week’s easing of provincial ‘circuit-breaker’ policy banning all indoor dining to lessen the spread of the pandemic.

“I know people might say ‘they’re not at 100-per-cent capacity,’ but that, in my mind, doesn’t warrant (the move). I’ve really thought about the impact for the residents who live in that area, and the risk factor – it’s too great for me.”

But Kristjanson said further consideration of the measure, already voted on twice before by council, would be “an embarrassment.”

“(There are) 18 businesses who are interested in doing this; we’ve heard a lot of people saying they’re for it and a few that have said they’re against it, but that’s because we don’t have a plan yet,” Kristjanson said. “I trust that staff will come up with a plan that addresses all the issues.”

He said that restaurants have already made a considerable investment preparing for the measure and that to go back on it would show “bad judgment on our part, and bad faith.”

“I’m generally in favour of proceeding with this trial,” Manning said. “But we made this decision a couple of weeks ago based on information that has since changed. We need to look to amending this plan.”

Manning subsequently moved that the one-way measure last only until provincial health orders “allow 100 per cent indoor dining.”

Manning’s motion was passed by council, with Kristjanson and Johanson opposed.

In answer to questions from Chesney, who seconded Fathers’ motion, engineering and operations director Jim Gordon reconfirmed the costs of establishing the lane closure and one-way would be $50,000 plus with an additional $40,000 a month in rental costs, resulting a total cost of $200,000.

The city has also been working with TransLink to establish temporary alternative bus routes as of June 7, Gordon said, adding that flaggers will also be assigned to Marine Drive for the first few days of the closure until drivers become accustomed to the new traffic pattern, which has been worked out by professional traffic-planning managers and reviewed by staff.

City of White RockCoronavirusTraffic

Just Posted

A student arrives at school as teachers dressed in red participate in a solidarity march to raise awareness about cases of COVID-19 at Ecole Woodward Hill Elementary School, in Surrey, B.C., on Tuesday, February 23, 2021. A number of schools in the Fraser Health region, including Woodward Hill, have reported cases of the B.1.7.7 COVID-19 variant first detected in the U.K. (File photo: THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck)
COVID-19 cases at Surrey school district drop ‘dramatically’

There were 19 notifications sent out in the first 9 days of June, compared to in all of 245 in May

Surrey council chambers. (File photo)
Surrey council endorses ‘public engagement’ strategy

Council approves ‘Public Engagement Strategy and Toolkit,’ and a ‘Big Vision, Bold Moves’ transportation public engagement plan

Surrey City Hall. (File photo)
Surrey council approves $7.3 million contract for street paving projects

City council awarded Lafarge Canada Inc. $7,326,667.95 for 15 road projects in North Surrey and one in South Surrey

Surrey city Councillor Brenda Locke. (File photo)
Locke seeks breakdown on what Surreyites get for taxes paid to Metro Vancouver

Surrey councillor presented motion to council Monday asking city staff to do a cost/benefit analysis

SURREY NOW & THEN: Little Theatre’s 59-year history ends with big plans for move to Langley

A former church, the theatre building/property has sold for close to $900,000

People watch a car burn during a riot following game 7 of the NHL Stanley Cup final in downtown Vancouver, B.C., in this June 15, 2011 photo. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Geoff Howe
10 years ago: Where were you during the 2011 Vancouver Stanley Cup Riots?

Smashed-in storefronts, looting, garbage can fires and overturned cars some of the damage remembered today

Children’s shoes and flowers are shown after being placed outside the Ontario legislature in Toronto on Monday, May 31, 2021. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Frank Gunn
Ontario commits $10 million to investigate burial sites at residential schools

Truth and Reconciliation Commission identified 12 locations of unmarked burial sites in Ontario

Singer-songwriter Jann Arden is pictured with a draft horse. (Canadian Horse Defence Coalition)
Jann Arden backs petition to stop ‘appalling’ live horse export, slaughter

June 14 is the International Day to End Live Export of Animals

A letter from a senior RCMP officer in Langley said Mounties who attended a mayor’s gala in January of 2020 used their own money. Controversy over the event has dogged mayor Val van den Broek (R) and resulted in the reassignment of Langley RCMP Supt. Murray Power (L). (file)
Langley RCMP officers used ‘own money’ to attend mayor’s gala, senior officer says

‘I would not want there to be a belief that the police officers had done something untoward’

Squirrels are responsible for most of U.S. power outages. Black Press file photo
Dead squirrels in park lead Richmond RCMP to probe ‘toxic substance’ found in trees

Police aren’t sure if the chemical was dumped there or placed intentionally

Two hundred and fifteen lights are placed on the lawn outside the Residential School in Kamloops, B.C., Saturday, June, 13, 2021. The remains of 215 children were discovered buried near the former Kamloops Indian Residential School earlier this month. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Jonathan Hayward
Days after Kamloops remains discovery, Tk’emlups families gather to unite, move ahead

‘We have to work together because this is going to be setting a precedent for the rest of the country’

In this Saturday, May 29, 2021, file photo, people crowd the Santa Monica Pier in Santa Monica, Calif. California, the first state in America to put in place a coronavirus lockdown, is now turning a page on the pandemic. Most of California’s coronavirus restrictions will disappear Tuesday, June 15, 2021. (AP Photo/Damian Dovarganes, File)
With COVID tamed, it’s a ‘grand reopening’ in California

No more state rules on social distancing, no more limits on capacity, no more mandatory masks

Montreal Canadiens goaltender Carey Price (31) is scored on by Vegas Golden Knights defenseman Alec Martinez, not pictured, during the second period in Game 1 of an NHL hockey Stanley Cup semifinal playoff series Monday, June 14, 2021, in Las Vegas. (AP Photo/John Locher)
Habs fall 4-1 to Vegas Golden Knights in Game 1 of NHL semifinal series

Match was Montreal’s first game outside of Canada in 2021

Kelowna-Lake Country MLA Norm Letnick, assistant deputy speaker at the B.C. legislature, presides over committee discussions. The legislature is completing its delayed spring session this week, with most MLAs participating by video conference. (Hansard TV)
B.C.’s daily COVID-19 infections dip below 100 over weekend

Only 68 new cases recorded Monday, four additional deaths

Most Read