Rob Fleming (left), B.C.’s minister of transportation and infrastructure, visited the Salmon Arm West Highway 1 project site on Oct. 14, 2021. (Zachary Roman/Salmon Arm Observer)

Rob Fleming (left), B.C.’s minister of transportation and infrastructure, visited the Salmon Arm West Highway 1 project site on Oct. 14, 2021. (Zachary Roman/Salmon Arm Observer)

Transportation minister: Salmon Arm West Highway 1 project more than 50% complete

Rob Fleming visited the project site on Oct. 14

B.C.’s transportation minister is pleased with the progress being made on the Salmon Arm West project along Highway 1.

Rob Fleming visited the site of the local Trans-Canada Highway four-laning and Salmon River Bridge replacement project on Oct. 14. He said it was more than halfway done.

Fleming said with increased tourism this past summer, as well as evacuation alerts and orders in the Shuswap, it became apparent how important that portion of the highway is.

Traffic in the area of the project has been heavy, so a decision was made to use night shifts to help complete it. Work that would require Highway 1 to be reduced to single-lane alternating-traffic will be completed between 7 p.m. and 7 a.m.

Jennifer Fraser, director of the Trans-Canada Highway program for the Ministry of Transportation and Construction, said the project will be “substantially ready for everyone to use and drive in fall 2022.”

Over the winter of 2022-23, the project site will be monitored to see how it reacts to the weather, and come spring 2023, crews will return to do any cleanups or finishing touches needed, she said.

David Gibson, a ministry representative, said the project is being paved with a polymer mix. He said its harder to work with, but holds up better in harsh weather.

“This is going to create more strength, and we’re doing three layers of it. It’ll help the longevity of the road,” said Gibson.

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