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Columbia Street closure in New West extended until late May

Full closure of Columbia Street between McBride Boulevard and Elliot Street extended by Pattullo Bridge replacement project.
Pattullo Bridge
The Columbia Street closure is continuing on longer than expected but folks can still access the Pattullo Bridge.

The closure of part of Columbia Street is being extended because it’s taking longer than anticipated to install structural supports needed for the Pattullo Bridge replacement.

The sections of Columbia Street and the Central Valley Greenway between McBride Boulevard and Elliot Street have been closed since April 2 so crews can lift steel girders over the roadway between the bridge foundations on either side of Columbia Street. The road closure was expected to be in effect for one month.

“This closure will be extended until late May, as installation of the structural supports for the girders is taking longer than anticipated,” said a notice from the project team. “We appreciate your patience while this work is underway.”

Columbia Street between Sixth Street and Elliot Street remains open for local traffic.

While construction is taking place, people are still able to access all businesses on Columbia Street and the Front Street Mews.

During this closure, drivers, pedestrians and cyclists are being detoured to Royal Avenue. Front Street is open to regular traffic and trucks.

Traffic control personnel will be on site to assist if needed.

Anyone having specific mobility concerns and needing assistance traversing the area is asked to email [email protected] or call the 24/7 phone line at 1-844-815-6149.

The Columbia Street loop ramp is closed as part of this road closure, but access to Pattullo Bridge is available via McBride Boulevard (Bridge Connector) and the Royal Avenue on-ramp.

The Columbia Street closure and girder installation activities will take place 24/7. As much as possible, crews will be doing the noisy work activities during the day.

“Once the girders are lifted into place, crews will bolt them together,” said the notice. “This will require night work, and nearby residents may hear the bolting while it is underway.”

After Columbia Street reopens, a six-month full closure of Front Street will be required for crews to install girders and build the bridge deck between Columbia Street and the in-river bridge foundation.

Turn restrictions

In related news, the left turn from Memorial Drive to McBride Boulevard southbound (towards the Pattullo Bridge) is temporarily restricted on weekdays between 3 and 6 p.m. This left-turn restriction, which began April 17, is in effect while the current Columbia Street closure is in place.

“This temporary turning restriction is to reduce local congestion and to ensure that emergency responders, community members, and businesses have unrestricted access to local streets,” according to a notice from the Pattullo Bridge replacement project.

According to the notice, right-in and right-out access on Memorial Drive, as well as the southbound left turns from McBride Boulevard to Memorial Drive, will be maintained, and traffic control personnel will be on-site as required to assist with traffic operations. All existing movements at East Royal Avenue and McBride Boulevard will be maintained, with inbound movements signed for “local access only.”