Jati Sidhu Member of Parliament for Mission-Matsqui-Fraser Canyon was recently joined by B.C. Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure Todd Stone to announce a major highway upgrade to the Coquihalla Highway that will provide additional safety for the commercial trucking industry.
The Box Canyon chain-up area, located approximately 30 kilometres north of Hope on Highway 5, will undergo a significant expansion to accommodate up to 70 commercial trucks. This project will also see the addition of new deceleration and acceleration lanes, as well as new washroom facilities and more parking.
“Transportation and distribution are a vital part of our local, regional and national economies. These upgrades will support the continued growth of industry, helping local businesses get their goods to market faster and more efficiently, while reducing congestion and improving safety for the thousands of drivers who travel through the area each day,” Jati Sidhu, Member of Parliament for Mission-Matsqui-Fraser.
“In addition to the Box Canyon chain-up area, work will begin on construction of a new chain-off area at the existing Coquihalla Summit Recreational parking lot, as well as the extension of the third southbound lane near the Great Bear Snow Shed. These upgrades will improve the safety of Highway 5, a critical trade corridor linking the Lower Mainland of British Columbia with the rest of Canada.
Trucks using Highway 5 during winter storms are required to use chains. Using chains helps reduce the number of accidents, saves lives and keeps the highway open. Expanding the Box Canyon chain-up area will provide a safe place for truck drivers to put chains on their trucks and the new chain-off area will provide a safe place for them to take the chains off.
“We’re looking forward to working with our federal partners to expand the Box Canyon chain-up area, which will provide additional capacity for trucks to chain up in the winter. In addition, new washroom facilities will bring a fresh new look to the area after 30 years,” said Laurie Throness, MLA for Chilliwack-Hope.
The Government of Canada will provide up to $7.3 million through the Building Canada Fund and B.C. will provide $10.3 million toward this $17.6-million project.
“Improving the economic efficiency and safety of the commercial trucking industry is a key priority in B.C. on the Move, the province’s 10-year transportation plan. This joint funding allows us to move forward and build projects that are instrumental in promoting economic development throughout B.C. and supporting the Province’s Pacific Gateway Strategy,” said Todd Stone, B.C. Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure.