Doug Routley said upgrading Crofton Road has been one of his top priorities as the MLA for Nanaimo-North Cowichan.
He said he’s pleased work has finally begun on the dilapidated road connecting Crofton to the Trans Canada Highway that will see the road widened and completely resurfaced, with the project scheduled to be completed in 2020.
“What has been promised for 16 years and never delivered on will be achieved in 16 months of a NDP government,” he said.
“The road has long been a safety concern in our community and is in dire need of upgrades. Logging trucks, drivers, and cyclists have to swerve in and out of lanes to avoid potholes and dangerous dips. I lobbied the former Liberal government countless times to fix the road, and while they made many promises to our community, they never followed through.”
The Ministry of Transportation is currently working with Telus and BC Hydro to relocate utilities in preparation for road upgrades.
The construction on the shoulder widening is set to begin this fall, and the resurfacing is scheduled to be completed in 2020.
The road, which is the responsibility of the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, is heavily used by logging trucks, chemical transports, school buses, and ferry and residential traffic, which has caused significant wear and tear on it over the years.
It has also seen significant deterioration from heavy snowfalls in recent winters, and the plowing to clear the road has only made the problem worse.
Despite years of studies and promises from the province, the heavily used road is still full of potholes and dangerous dips that have become a major safety concern for those who have to use it.
Routley said one of the “bitter pills” in the past on this issue is that, years ago, he received a letter from former Liberal Transportation Minister Todd Stone stating that surveys of the road and other preparatory work were underway at the time, but just days before the last provincial election, he acknowledged that work had never begun on the project.
“I don’t blame the residents for their cynicism,” he said.
“I know how important this issue is to the people of Crofton and I share their concerns. I’ll continue working with (current Transportation) Minister Claire Trevena to ensure the upgrades will go ahead as planned and I will keep the community updated on the progress of the project.”