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 / 08.09.18

Lougheed Highway lane closures

Ever since we broke ground in May, our crews have been making good progress in Vancouver and Burnaby as part of the FortisBC Gas Line Upgrade project. Our goal throughout construction is to complete the work safely, and as quickly as possible. The best way to do that is to close lanes on a number of busy roads. That’s why we closed East 1st Avenue in Vancouver between Nanaimo and Clark completely for the summer, and why we’re closing some of the lanes on Lougheed Highway in Burnaby from August until the end of October 2018.

We understand these closures will cause traffic delays, and while you may need to allow more time to reach them, businesses are open along the construction route.

We’re making these improvements to our system throughout 2018 and 2019 because of our commitment to our customers. We’re making sure we can continue to meet their natural gas needs now—and into the future.

Why we’re closing lanes on Lougheed Highway

We looked at a number of routes and considered many factors when we were deciding which route our gas line upgrade should follow. Our top priority was the safety of our crew and the general public.

In Burnaby, Lougheed Highway was chosen largely due to feedback we received during the regulatory review period. During that time, the City of Burnaby and local residents requested we change the proposed route from a residential neighbourhood north of Brentwood Town Centre to Lougheed Highway. We listened to those concerns and took them into account during the route selection process.

Temporarily closing lanes on Lougheed was necessary to increase workspace and add another layer of safety.

Traffic Safety

We’ve worked closely with the City of Burnaby to create a traffic plan for the safety of the public and our crew, and to minimize the impact of our project in surrounding neighbourhoods. We’ll continue to work with the municipality as the project continues.

Changes to transit

Part of our traffic safety plan includes temporary changes to local bus routes, as well as the location of certain bus stops. Visit Translink for up-to-date trip planning information, as well as advisories about these changes.

Closing lanes on Lougheed Highway is necessary because it provides the safest workspace for our crew and equipment to move around. The closures will also help us complete our work more quickly and reduce the inconvenience to the community.

Ian Miki discusses Burnaby lane closures
Ian Miki Project Director

Construction methods for an urban environment

If you’ve travelled in Vancouver in recent months, you’ll have seen how complex it is to build a gas line through a busy city centre. We use two main construction methods on the project: open cut and track bore trenchless construction.

Most of the work will be done using open cut (or traditional trench) construction, which involves digging an open trench and laying the gas line into it.

To help you get to where you need to go, we’re keeping major arterial routes open throughout construction. Using underground (or track bore trenchless) construction allows us to keep major intersections such as Willingdon and Lougheed open. We’ll bore a tunnel under the intersection and push the gas line through.

Art Kanzaki discusses FortisBC Upgrades

Track bore trenchless technology allows us to install the gas line under intersections so we can keep major north-south arteries open and traffic moving.

Art Kanzaki discusses construction method
Art Kanzaki Project Director

Business as usual

While you may need to access them differently, your favourite shops and stores along the route are all open during construction. We’re supporting local businesses by working with them one-on-one to address their concerns, and helping get the word out in the local communities and neighbourhoods that the businesses are still open. We’re also featuring local businesses in our regular newsletters, our social media channels and on the project’s community webpage.

Commercial Drive business as usual

We were concerned that customers wouldn’t know we were open once construction began. FortisBC listened to us and came up with a solution. The signage they put up has really helped.

Artem Voropaev Owner, Pacific Laptop

What alternative will you choose to adjust your route around the Vancouver to Coquitlam gas line upgrade?

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What alternative will you choose to adjust your route around the Vancouver to Coquitlam gas line upgrade?