Massey Tunnel replacement could help B.C.’s economic recovery

Tunnel could lift economy

Replacement of the Massey Tunnel won’t be affected by the pandemic, according to Delta North MLA Ravi Kahlon, who says the timeline for the project remains the same.

“The minister made a commitment that the (business) plan would be made public in the fall, and the timeline remains the same,” Kahlon says.

And as the province continues to reopen, the project – along with the provincial government’s other infrastructure plans – could play an important role in B.C.’s economic recovery, said Kahlon.

“I think (these projects) are a real opportunity for us to use those dollars to make sure people are getting back to work, but also to build the infrastructure that is very much needed in B.C.,” said Kahlon.

The province already had “the most aggressive capital infrastructure plan” in Canada, he said.

“Richmond Hospital is getting a new tower, and we are looking to take the next steps on the Surrey Hospital, (which was announced) last year. And so, we have a very aggressive plan, and I think this is going to play a very important role in our economic recovery.”

The province will also need additional investments, said Kahlon, such as in “potential green infrastructure," adding that he hopes to see more investments into recreational and public facilities, in addition to more capital projects.

While the province has set aside $1.5 billion to help with economic recovery, Kahlon said the premier has also set up an economic advisory group to look at potential impacts from COVID-19.

When it comes to next steps for the Massey Tunnel, the province will look at two shortlisted options for the business plan – either an eight-lane tunnel or an eight-lane bridge – said Kahlon.

“In the fall, we’ll be able to narrow it down to the preferred option and the business plan that goes with it,” he said.

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