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Pattullo Bridge Replacement Project

Pattullo Bridge with cars communiting across it.

Construction on the new Patullo Bridge will begin in the summer of 2019 and the new bridge will open in 2023. The Project cost is estimated to be $1.377 billion and will be delivered, funded and owned by the Province of B.C.

Why is a new bridge needed?

Strategically located between the Port Mann and Alex Fraser/Queensborough bridges, the Pattullo Bridge provides a direct connection between New Westminster and Surrey. The central location of the bridge also makes it a vital link in the regional transportation network for people, goods and services.

Opened in 1937, the 80-year-old structure does not meet modern design standards and would be at risk in the event of a moderate earthquake, ship collision or high wind event. Its piers are at risk of being undermined by river scour and many bridge components have surpassed their useful lives.

Existing sidewalks, barriers and connections for pedestrians and cyclists do not provide the level of protection from traffic that a newer bridge would provide.

A regular maintenance program has extended the existing bridge’s lifespan but escalating efforts to prolong its use are no longer cost effective. An assessment of maintenance needs has revealed that upgrading the existing bridge to meet modern safety standards would be extremely challenging, both technically and financially.

Replacing the existing bridge is essential for maintaining a critical river crossing for both people and goods between the cities of New Westminster and Surrey.

The new four-lane bridge will provide improvements for everyone using the bridge, including people who are driving, cycling or walking, as well as communities on either side of the bridge:

  • A safer crossing for all bridge users with modern, wider lanes, separated by a centre median barrier
  • Dedicated walking and cycling lanes, separated from traffic by a median on both sides of the bridge
  • The new bridge will be built to allow for potential expansion to 6 lanes in the future

In Surrey, the new bridge will continue to connect directly to King George Boulevard, and a new off ramp will connect the bridge to westbound Highway 17.

Background

Efforts to identify a solution for the aging Pattullo Bridge have been underway since 2006. TransLink led the Project through the conceptual development and planning phases.  Replacement of the bridge was included in the Mayors’ Council 10 Year Vision for Metro Vancouver.

Three general goals have guided the Project:

  • Provide a structurally sound bridge crossing to maintain a critical local and regional connection;
  • Improve safety for all users with modern lane widths, road curvature, centre median and separated pedestrian and cycling lanes; and
  • Improve connectivity, reliability and modal choice.

The new bridge will be located just north and upstream of the existing bridge and will connect to the existing road network in New Westminster and Surrey. Constructing a new bridge next to the existing bridge will allow the existing bridge to continue operating until the new one is open. Once the new bridge is open, the existing bridge will be removed.

Public Consultation

The Pattullo Bridge Replacement Project has undergone extensive public and stakeholder consultation including:

  • Strategic Review Consultation: June 3 - 28, 2013
    Sought input from residents, businesses, local and regional stakeholders, and bridge users about the Problem Statement of the Pattullo Bridge Review, the objectives, and the initial screening of 25 alternatives for rehabilitating or replacing the bridge.
  • Community Connections Phase 1 Consultation: June 13 - July 11, 2016
    Sought input from residents, businesses, local and regional stakeholders, and bridge users about community connections, including road network improvements on both sides of the bridge in New Westminster and Surrey.
  • Community Connections Phase 2 Consultation: October 3 - 31, 2016
    Sought input from residents, businesses, local and regional stakeholders, and bridge users about pedestrian and cyclist connections on both sides of the new bridge in Surrey and New Westminster.

The project is also subject to review under British Columbia’s Environmental Assessment Act and Canadian Environmental Assessment Act. To inform the Environmental Assessment there were two rounds of public consultation.  The first public comment period took place from June 26 to July 26, 2017.  The British Columbia Environmental Assessment Office will hold a second public comment period during the application review stage, anticipated in Spring 2018.

Consultation with Aboriginal groups is ongoing in accordance with direction provided by the Project’s regulators (BCEAO and VFPA). These groups have also been invited by the BCEAO to participate in a project working group and related discussions have been ongoing.

For ongoing information and updates about the Pattullo Bridge Replacement Project, visit the project page.