Construction crews from FortisBC tear up the brand new roadway which leads to the Kawkawa bridge.

Road to bridge ripped up

Local drivers thought their construction woes and delays were over.

But a few days ago, an unexpected road crew appeared.

Less than two weeks after council proudly proclaimed the opening of the new Kawkawa Bridge, crews from FortisBC were tearing up the road directly in front of it.

Local drivers thought their construction woes and delays were over.

But a few days ago, an unexpected road crew appeared.

Less than two weeks after council proudly proclaimed the opening of the new Kawkawa Bridge, crews from FortisBC were tearing up the road directly in front of it.

The construction left motorists waiting as single lane traffic had to be employed to allow work to continue.

“I call it a Paul Newman moment – there was a failure to communicate,” said Hope town manager Earl Rowe as he quoted the movie Cool Hand Luke.

Apparently a miscalculation occurred during the planning process.

They made a mistake,” said Rowe, who pointed out it was FortisBC’s error, not the district.

“We had all the utilities come out before hand,” he explained.

But Rowe said something went wrong during the diagraming process.

“It should have all been set up for the connections to be made at the side of the road,” said Rowe.

But once the road was complete, the pipes could not be located. As a result, FortisBC had to dig up Kawkawa Lake Road.

Hope residents had already experienced a month of traffic delays during the final stages of the new bridge construction and it is “unfortunate” that they are being inconvenienced again.

However, Rowe said that would be the only inconvenience for taxpayers.

“Fortis is paying for all of it.”

On Tuesday, digging was complete and two large, bumpy patches were in place. That, said Rowe, is temporary.

“They (Fortis) will be repairing the road to my specifications. It will be made right.”

Rowe said you have to take some things with a laugh, adding if you take in the entire scope of the bridge project, it’s a minor development.

“Considering what could have gone wrong on this project – putting a bridge across the river –  this is nothing.”

Marcus Wong, corporate spokesperson for FortisBC said the crew is merely on site to perform general maintenance.

“We have routine maintenance scheduled throughout B.C.,” he said.

“We are on site today (Tuesday) paving the road as we speak … they will be repaired to municipal standards,” said Wong.