Opinion: A bridge at last

A source of endless frustration for both residents and visitors to our community received some welcome relief last week.

A source of endless frustration for both residents and visitors to our community received some welcome relief last week.

After years of discussion, three levels of government came together to finance a new bridge over the Vedder River. (See story here.)

That the project draws support from federal and provincial governments makes sense. Vedder Crossing has a regional significance that warrants participation by taxpayers beyond Chilliwack’s municipal borders. It is the perfect example of a “shovel-ready” joint, tri-level infrastructure project. (Property has been acquired, initial design work done, and municipal participation budgeted.)

The bridge proposal has drawn some criticism for its design. Some say replacing a two-lane bridge with a two-lane bridge is short-sighted and won’t relieve the chronic congestion at the crossing.

However, a four-lane bridge is not needed. What’s needed is a more efficient design that provides better traffic flow. Wider lanes and the replacement of the three-way stop with a roundabout will deliver those improvements.

A four-lane bridge would be as intrusive and expensive as it would be unnecessary.

Critics, too, have pointed to the timing. True, this is an election year. And yes, the City has been pressing for federal involvement for years only to see the funds released just months before Chilliwack voters go to the polls.

However, supporting significant infrastructure projects is what federal governments – whatever their stripe – are supposed to do. That it should come in an election year might provide tantalizing optics, but we like to think voters are a bit more sophisticated than that.

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Just Posted

Chilliwack General Hospital. (Paul Henderson/ Chilliwack Progress file)
Chilliwack General given award for surgical care and patient outcomes

First time three Fraser Health hospitals receive award from surgical quality improvement program

Jessica Peters is a reporter at the Chilliwack Progress.
COLUMN: Bouncing back from a brain injury isn’t easy

‘We didn’t know how bad it was until I tried to return to work’

The 11th annual Christmas Stocking Drive hosted by Royal LePage runs now until Dec. 11. (David Sucsy, Getty Images via Metro Creative Graphics)
Chilliwack Realtors asking people to help fill Christmas stockings for kids, seniors

Donations of cash, items needed for Christmas Stocking Drive hosted by Royal LePage

The BC Court of Appeal in Vancouver.
BC Court of Appeal hearing Barry Neufeld’s arguments why defamation suit should go ahead

BC Supreme Court tossed out lawsuit against Glen Hansman a year ago following anti-SLAPP legislation

Exterior Christmas decorators wanted Agassiz Seniors Community

Call to action to brighten the upcoming holiday season for isolated seniors

A man wearing a face mask to help curb the spread of COVID-19 walks in downtown Vancouver, B.C., Sunday, Nov. 22, 2020. The use of masks is mandatory in indoor public and retail spaces in the province. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Darryl Dyck
B.C. records deadliest day of pandemic with 13 deaths, 738 new COVID-19 cases

Number of people in hospital is nearing 300, while total cases near 30,000

The COVID-19 test centre at Peace Arch Hospital is located on the building’s south side. (Tracy Holmes photo)
B.C. woman calls for consistency in COVID-19 post-test messaging

‘Could we just get one thing straight?’ asks Surrey’s Deb Antifaev

(File photo)
Alberta woman charged after allegedly hitting boy with watermelon at Okanagan campsite

Police say a disagreement among friends at an Adams Lake campsite turned ugly

Court of Appeal for British Columbia in Vancouver. (File photo: Tom Zytaruk)
B.C. woman loses appeal to have second child by using late husband’s sperm

Assisted Human Reproduction Act prohibits the removal of human reproductive material from a donor without consent

B.C. projects targeting the restoration of sockeye salmon stocks in the Fraser and Columbia Watersheds will share in $10.9 million of federal funding to protect species at risk. (Kenny Regan photo)
13 projects protecting B.C. aquatic species at risk receive $11 million in federal funding

Salmon and marine mammals expected to benefit from ecosystem-based approach

Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good
Join Black Press Media and Do Some Good

Pay it Forward program supports local businesses in their community giving

Cannabis bought in British Columbia (Ashley Wadhwani/Black Press Media)
Is it time to start thinking about greener ways to package cannabis?

Packaging suppliers are still figuring eco-friendly and affordable packaging options that fit the mandates of Cannabis Regulations

File photo
Surrey RCMP investigating death threat against Surrey councillor

‘On Monday morning I received a threat on messenger that basically said to put a bullet in me,’ Councillor Jack Hundial told the Now-Leader

Krista Macinnis displays the homework assignment that her Grade 6 daughter received on Tuesday. (Submitted photo)
B.C. mom angry that students asked to list positive stories about residential schools

Daughter’s Grade 6 class asked to write down 5 positive stories or facts

Most Read