Stephen Rees's blog

Thoughts about the relationships between transport and the urban area it serves

Posts Tagged ‘Stanley Park

Weekly Photo Challenge: Bridge

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The photo is of the Lions’ Gate Bridge across the Burrard Inlet in Vancouver BC taken in November last year.

On flickr I have more than 500 pictures with “bridge” in them. But this one had an instant appeal – both visually and also because it has a good story.

The original 1938 bridge looked a bit different – it was rebuilt in 2000 – 2001. There was a longish period of discussion over what should be done which did not just involve the bridge deck but also its approaches – through Stanley Park to the south and very busy roads it connected to in North and West Vancouver. There was much resistance to widening the causeway through the Park, but also great concern over how much traffic the areas around the bridge approaches could deal with. The deck has three lanes of traffic with a reversible centre lane to help cope with peak demands, but queueing for the bridge has long been – and still remains – an issue. Basically, while a lot of people wanted the crossing to be faster, there was no additional capacity available on both sides to allow for a wider bridge. Basically, we knew where the queues were going to be, and there was no desire to seem more of them.

Replacing the bridge deck, and linkages to the suspension cables, all took place while the bridge remained in service. The deck now has a nice smooth curve to it, replacing the former “bump” where the two ramps met in the middle. The sidewalks were also widened, and access for bicycles made much safer. This is in contrast to what seems to have become the default position in British Columbia, where road infrastructure is constantly expanded – and traffic then increases to fill the space available. The hope now is that with a much delayed change in the provincial government, the current plan to build a huge cable stayed bridge over the lower Fraser River will be abandoned in favour of a more realistic solution, the way that the challenge of the aging First Narrows bridge was dealt with. It isn’t actually necessary to build a new bridge to replace the tunnel, as refurbishing the existing sunken tubes and adding another, to carry a railway, is a cheaper and more effective solution, and poses much less threat to the ecologically sensitive Fraser estuary.

Written by Stephen Rees

July 5, 2017 at 10:48 am

What I did on Sunday

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There was a final trolleybus ride organised by TRAMS last Sunday. Jason Vanderhill was among those I shared the experience with and he has a wonderful set of images on flickr.

Mine – as seen on the Vancouver Metblog – were very ordinary.

Stanley Park loop

Photo by Jason Vanderhill

Written by Stephen Rees

April 29, 2008 at 6:00 pm

Posted in transit

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