The new free-flowing traffic pattern at the McKenzie interchange. (MoTI)

Ministry anticipates one-month adjustment period for motorists using new McKenzie interchange

New traffic pattern debuts during Thursday morning commute more than three years into construction

The Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MoTI) anticipates it will take about a month for motorists to get used to new traffic patterns on their morning commute now that traffic is free-flowing through the McKenzie interchange.

READ MORE: Traffic flows through new McKenzie Interchange configuration Thursday morning

Traffic flowed freely through the interchange in Saanich Thursday morning, in time for the morning commute. Locals said on Twitter that their morning commute was shorter than usual Thursday morning.

A spokesperson from the MoTI, Janelle Staite, said the ministry anticipates a month-long adjustment period for people to find their new routes and get used to the new traffic pattern.

“We are seeing more left-turn traffic at Tillicum, but we did have engineers on site at McKenzie and Tillicum and we had not seen delays. We anticipate that will subside as people get used to new traffic patterns,” Staite said. Staite also said there “will still be travel time benefits during that period.”

The new free-flowing traffic pattern at the McKenzie interchange.

Motorists heading southbound or northbound on the Trans-Canada Highway no longer have to have to wait for traffic lights at the McKenzie interchange. Motorists instead travel freely along the highway under the McKenzie/Admirals overpass.

Motorists heading southbound who want to turn left across the overpass onto McKenzie Avenue exit the highway on the right-hand side then keep left at the fork. Heading northbound, if a motorist wants to turn left onto Admirals Road they exit the highway to the right then keep left at the fork.

Staite said the ministry had engineers on site from early Thursday morning assessing traffic patterns, changeable message signs, overhead guide signs, and traffic signal timing. “Generally, feedback from staff is that traffic was flowing very smoothly under the highway structure,” Staite said.

Staite also warned the interchange is still a construction zone. “We want to make sure drivers are checking their speed and not doing more than 60 km/h because it is still a construction zone,” Staite said.

READ ALSO: McKenzie Interchange delivers early present

sophie.heizer@saanichnews.com


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