Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes (left) and Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins take a stroll on Gorge Bridge, which connects their municipalities. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes (left) and Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins take a stroll on Gorge Bridge, which connects their municipalities. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Saanich, Esquimalt partner on pedestrian infrastructure upgrades for Gorge Bridge

New walkway located in southbound curb lane, will feature protective concrete barriers

Saanich and Esquimalt are expanding pedestrian infrastructure on the Gorge Bridge which connects the two municipalities.

An expanded walkway is being added to the Gorge Bridge, which crosses the Gorge Waterway at Tillicum Road, with work set to take place on March 26. In the past, Saanich has been in charge of maintenance on the bridge and the Township of Esquimalt has contributed funds.

The new walkway will use the southbound curb lane and will feature protective concrete barriers. The decision to install new pedestrian infrastructure came about because the existing sidewalks on the bridge were deemed too narrow.

READ ALSO: Saanich aims to reduce residential road speed to 30 km/h through pilot project

In 2020, the southbound curb lane was closed to traffic for the CRD wastewater treatment project. Pedestrians used the closed lane for several months and when it was reopened to vehicles, both Saanich and Esquimalt received messages from residents asking that the lane be permanently closed to traffic. In response, after engineering staff determined that the change would have minimal traffic impacts but would ensure a safe connection to both sides of the bridge for pedestrians, the municipalities decided to make the lane a permanent walkway.

The project will create a safe walkway over the bridge that will connect to the very popular pedestrian loop route around the Gorge inlet which passes through both municipalities, noted Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins, adding that it’s a route she often walks.

“This addition across the bridge just makes it so much safer,” she said. “It’s the right thing to do.”

READ ALSO: Sidney ditches Saanich for Victoria for tower crane rescues

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes is pleased to be working with Desjardins and emphasized the importance of ensuring that the active transportation infrastructure in the district connects to that of neighbouring municipalities.

“The addition of this permanent pedestrian facility will both add to our growing (active transportation) networks and safely expand the link between our two communities,” he said, adding that fixing the missing links will help avoid a patchwork of walkways. The goal is for residents of all ages to feel safe travelling on foot or on wheels.

Construction will take place overnight on March 26 in order to minimize traffic impacts and is expected to be completed in one day. While crews work, the bridge will be reduced to a single lane with alternating directions and traffic control will guide drivers through. Transit and emergency vehicles will be prioritized.


@devonscarlett
Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter.

devon.bidal@saanichnews.com

District of SaanichinfrastructureTownship of Esquimalt

 

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes (left) and Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins take a stroll on Gorge Bridge, which connects their municipalities. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Saanich Mayor Fred Haynes (left) and Esquimalt Mayor Barb Desjardins take a stroll on Gorge Bridge, which connects their municipalities. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)

Just Posted

B.C. Centre for Disease Control data showing new cases by local health area for the week of May 2-8. (BCCDC image)
Vancouver Island COVID-19 local case counts the lowest they’ve been all year

On some areas of Island, more than 60 per cent of adults have received a vaccine dose

Pathfinders and Wild Wise Sooke built slim, black bat houses to be hung around Sooke. (Submitted/Wild Wise Sooke)
Sooke teens build bat condos

Wild Wise Sooke says bats will sleep, hibernate and raise their young in the boxes

Saanich police used a drone to investigate a fatal crash in the 5200-block of West Saanich Road on Feb. 4, 2021. (Devon Bidal/News Staff)
Police determine speed, impairment not factors in fatal West Saanich Road crash

Driver who died veered across center line into oncoming traffic for unknown reason, police say

Prince Rupert was one of the first B.C. communities targeted for mass vaccination after a steep rise in infections. Grey area marks community-wide vaccine distribution. (B.C. Centre for Disease Control)
B.C. tracks big drop in COVID-19 infections after vaccination

Prince Rupert, Indigenous communities show improvement

Anyone with information on any of these individuals is asked to call 1-800-222-TIPS (8477) or visit the website victoriacrimestoppers.ca for more information.
Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers wanted list for the week of May 11

Greater Victoria Crime Stoppers is seeking the public’s help in locating the… Continue reading

Canada’s demo Hornet soars over the Strait of Georgia near Comox. The F-18 demo team is returning to the Valley for their annual spring training. Photo by Sgt. Robert Bottrill/DND
F-18 flight demo team returning to Vancouver Island for spring training

The team will be in the Comox Valley area from May 16 to 24

Ladysmith RCMP safely escorted the black bear to the woods near Ladysmith Cemetary. (Town of Ladysmith/Facebook photo)
Bow-legged bear returns to Ladysmith, has an appointment with the vet

Brown Drive Park closed as conservation officers search for her after she returned from relocation

Brian Peach rescues ducklings from a storm drain in Smithers May 12. (Lauren L’Orsa video screen shot)
VIDEO: Smithers neighbours rescue ducklings from storm drain

Momma and babies made it safely back to the creek that runs behind Turner Way

Signage for ICBC, the Insurance Corporation of British Columbia, is shown in Victoria, B.C., on February 6, 2018. THE CANADIAN PRESS/Chad Hipolito
$150 refunds issued to eligible customers following ICBC’s switch to ‘enhanced care’

Savings amassed from the insurance policy change will lead to one-time rebates for close to 4 million customers

Pixabay
Island Health: two doctors, new clinic space to avert Port McNeill health crisis

Island Health has leased space to use as an immediate clinic location to avert health crisis

Police investigate a fatal 2011 shooting in a strip mall across from Central City Shopping Centre, which was deemed a gang hit. The Mayor’s Gang Task Force zeroed in on ways to reduce gang involvement and activity. (File photo)
COVID-19 could be a cause in public nature of B.C. gang violence: expert

Martin Bouchard says the pandemic has changed people’s routines and they aren’t getting out of their homes often, which could play a role in the brazen nature of shootings

Most Read