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Delta bus-on-shoulder lanes complete south of Massey Tunnel

Dedicated lanes expected to help alleviate traffic congestion and speed up travel by transit
The province says transit users along Highway 99 can expect to see quicker, more reliable travel thanks to recently completed bus-on-shoulder lanes south of the George Massey Tunnel. (Province of British Columbia photo)

The province says transit users along Highway 99 can expect to see quicker, more reliable travel thanks to recently completed bus-on-shoulder lanes south of the George Massey Tunnel.

On Nov. 23, the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure announced it had completed work to extend the lanes southbound between Highway 17A and Ladner Trunk Road and northbound between Ladner Trunk Road and 80th Street to tie into the existing bus-on-shoulder lane.

“The extension of the bus-on-shoulder lanes along Highway 99 south of the tunnel will make travel by transit even more convenient,” Transportation Minister Rob Fleming said in a press release. “These upgrades will mean even greater reliability and time savings for those people who use the bus along this popular corridor.”

The lanes are expected to help alleviate traffic congestion by allowing buses to travel in their own dedicated area of the road. Following some minor landscaping and lane marking, transit users will get to experience the new lanes as they are put into service over the next few weeks.

The new bus lanes will also tie into the forthcoming eight-lane replacement for the aging George Massey Tunnel and the existing bus-on-shoulder lanes north of the tunnel to improve overall public transit reliability along Highway 99, the ministry stated in its release.

“We are making it easier for people to take advantage of public transit and to leave their vehicles at home by improving the infrastructure they rely on,” Dan Coulter, minister of state for infrastructure and transit, said in a press release. “People choosing to use transit along Highway 99 will save even more time with the extension of these dedicated bus-on-shoulder lanes.”

Other completed transit and cycling improvements in the area include the Bridgeport Road bus connection and widening of the Highway 99/Highway 17A off-ramp.

The Bridgeport bus connection was finished in 2022 and includes a safer signalized intersection on Sea Island Way that prioritizes buses and protects pedestrians crossing the road.

Upgrades to the Highway 99/Highway 17A off-ramp were also completed in October 2022 and included extending and widening the northbound Highway 99 off-ramp to the Highway 17A intersection to improve traffic flow and reduce congestion, and an upgrade to the George Massey Tunnel bike shuttle stops north and south of the river.

Those improvements, as well as the under-construction five-lane Steveston Interchange expected to be in operation by 2025, are part of the Highway 99 Tunnel Program, the centerpiece of which is the new eight-lane immersed tube tunnel.

The new tunnel will have three vehicle lanes and a dedicated transit lane in each direction, with a separated active transportation corridor for cyclists and pedestrians. The project is currently in the procurement phase, with the project’s design-build team expected to be chosen in spring 2024.

Concurrent with procurement, the project is making its way through the province’s environmental assessment process after receiving its readiness decision in mid-September.

READ MORE: Massey Tunnel replacement procurement process moves to next phase

James Smith

About the Author: James Smith

James Smith is the founding editor of the North Delta Reporter.
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