The Pattullo Bridge is expected to undergo significant maintenance starting next year.

Province urged to cut Port Mann tolls during Pattullo work

Pattullo is untolled alternative but how useful will it be if lane closures are frequent during maintenance?

Transportation Minister Todd Stone is being urged to reduce or eliminate the tolls on the Port Mann Bridge while maintenance work restricts the use of the nearby Pattullo Bridge for months or even years.

The Pattullo is supposed to be the free alternative to the Port Mann but it will become more difficult to use if there are frequent lane closures during next year’s planned $100-million upgrade, Surrey Board of Trade CEO Anita Huberman said.

“We’ve asked if the tolls on the Port Mann could be suspended or reduced,” Huberman said. “If the Pattullo Bridge only has one lane open, that’s going to present a problem. We just want to give people options to move across the bridge without it costing too much.”

The seismic rehabilitation and deck replacement of the 76-year-old bridge is expected to begin in early 2015 but TransLink officials contacted Tuesday were unable to say how long the project will last.

Newly elected New Westminster Mayor Jonathan Coté said he also supports reduced or suspended Port Mann tolls during Pattullo construction.

New Westminster council has previously called for lower tolls on the Port Mann to reduce truck use of the free Pattullo, or else an outright ban on trucks there.

“We’ve faced pretty negative consequences with high tolls on the Port Mann Bridge and the Pattullo being the free alternative,” Coté said, noting the toll for trucks is $9 each way.

“It’s delivered a lot of traffic that should be on the highway network into our road network.”

Stone could not be reached for comment.

The Pattullo rehabilitation would be the minimum required to ensure it remains safe while work proceeds to design and build a modern new four-lane bridge, expected to open in 2023.

Although the bridge replacement is listed as part of Metro Vancouver mayors’ package of projects expected to go to referendum next spring, TransLink officials have previously said they plan to rebuild the Pattullo even if the referendum fails.

The new four-lane Pattullo would be tolled to pay for its construction. The existing span is considered critical for goods movement but is at risk of being knocked out of service by a moderate earthquake or a ship collision.

Just Posted

Upgrades could be coming to popular Penzer Park in Langley City (with video)

Council considers a staff proposal that would move up construction of planned washroom, benches picnic tables and shelter

VIDEO: celebrating Diwali in Langley

Muriel Arnason library marks event for 14th time

Former U.S. Olympian urges audience at TWU to stay true to themselves

‘I made the decision to lie,’ says Marion Jones

Langley senior about to turn 102

Centenarian and then some Mary Foote remains independent

Rainfall warning issued across Lower Mainland into the weekend

50 to 70 mm of rain expected to fall starting overnight Friday and into Sunday morning

VIDEO: Sears liquidation sales continue across B.C.

Sales are expected to continue into the New Year

Human remains found at Silver Creek property

RCMP have been searching the property in the 2200 block of Salmon River Road for the past three days

New B.C. acute care centre opens for young patients, expectant mothers

Facility aims to make B.C. Children’s Hospital visits more comfortable

Search ramps up for B.C. woman after dog, car found near Ashcroft

Jenny Lynn Larocque’s vehicle and dog were found in Venables Valley, but there is no sign of her

Police officer hit by car, stabbed in Edmonton attack back on job

Const. Mike Chernyk, 48, returned to work Thursday

UBC medical students learn to care for Indigenous people

Students in health-related studies to take course, workshop to help better serve Aboriginal people

Dorsett has 2 goals, assist in Canucks’ 4-2 win over Sabres

‘It was a real good hockey game by our group,’ Canucks coach Travis Green said.

Berry disappointed: Bear tries to eat fake fruit on woman’s door wreath

A Winnipeg woman has taken her berry-embellished wreath down, after a hungry bear visited her porch

Man in custody linked police search near Salmon Arm

Police have not connected arrest to search at Salmon River Road property

Most Read