The crawl on the Trans-Canada Highway has seen significant delays this week but the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure is hopeful another fix to the timing of traffic signals done Thursday will help alleviate some of the congestion.
Last week crews reached an important milestone in the McKenzie interchange project.
That milestone was shifting southbound traffic to temporary on-and-off ramps, so crews will now be able to lower the Trans-Canada Highway by eight metres.
“This work is a crucial step towards building the eventual interchange that is scheduled to open up to traffic by summer 2019 and cut peak commute times by 20 minutes,” said the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure in a statement Thursday.
“As a result of this realignment, the overall size of the intersection is roughly 60 metres larger, requiring more time for vehicles to clear the intersection travelling from Admirals Road and McKenzie Avenue … In order to accommodate the larger intersection, green and red light times were altered to allow for more time for vehicles travelling through the intersection.”
Since implementing the changes, ministry staff have been on site monitoring traffic flow and making adjustments. Thursday morning, traffic engineers and staff increased the overall green time by 15 seconds for southbound traffic travelling through the intersection.
“The ministry is well aware of the traffic issues shared by drivers commuting into Greater Victoria and are urgently working to improve traffic flow. We understand that many drivers still experienced a longer commute, but staff reported that overall congestion on Highway 1 cleared roughly 30 minutes earlier than the previous two days.”
The ministry thanked drivers for their patience and noted it will be continuing to monitor the corridor.
But drivers are fed up and took to social media this week to express their frustration.