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Bruhn Bridge Project

HOUSEBOAT CAPITAL OF CANADA

Bruhn Bridge Project: Focusing on Sicamous Priorities

The replacement of the Bruhn Bridge is a critical project for our community, and it’s essential that we endorse the option that will best support Sicamous residents and businesses. The existing Bruhn Bridge is 51 years old and needs replacing. The Trans-Canada Highway 1 RW Bruhn Bridge Project extends along Highway 1 west of Old Sicamous Road to east of Gill Avenue, and includes potential intersection improvements/turn-lanes at Old Sicamous Road, Old Spallumcheen Road, Gill Avenue and Silver Sands Road. This project is part of the Highway 1 Kamloops to Alberta Four-Laning Program.

The province is proposing three different bridge options for the replacement of the Trans-Canada Highway 1 RW Bruhn Bridge to complete the preliminary design:

  • Option 1: New 6-lane bridge on Trans-Canada Highway 1
  • Option 2: New 5-lane bridge on Trans-Canada Highway 1
  • Option 3: New 4-lane bridge on Trans-Canada Highway 1 with an additional Main Street Bridge

Sicamous has several key initiatives that are linked to the new bridge, and as a community, we have recently completed a marketing plan and new community brand strategy to ensure we can leverage our local assets to build on our fabulous quality of life and create expanded economic opportunities.

Taking the time to connect with community

Sicamous Council requested and received an extension to the provincial government’s consultation process to help ensure we can respond to the questions and concerns being raised by community members. We also want to focus in our community’s specific priorities. It’s important for our residents to be heard, so we have also added our own community engagement process.

Key Dates:

  • January 15, 2017 – Provincial government public consultation input deadline. Visit the Province's Bruhn Bridge webpage  
  • February 21, 2017 – Town Hall Meeting at  the Eagle River Secondary School Gym to meet with residents, hear their input and respond to questions about the options.
  • March 2017 – Sicamous Council will provide the Province with its recommended option based on local community priorities

Responding to Questions and Concerns

We are hearing from community members who have raised questions and concerns about the proposed options. We have done some preliminary work to look at the impacts of each option, and we will continue to add to this assessment as we connect with community members and complete our analysis.

We have also noted that there is some inaccurate information circulating. We recognize the importance of ensuring that decisions and input are based on accurate information. The following summary provides answers and accurate facts about the project and related implications. We will continue to update this list as we continue to hear from the community to help keep all residents informed.

What we're hearing

Answers and Updates

A Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI) document states that "preliminary design is well underway" and references the "Preferred Main Street Option" which sounds like the decision has already been made, suggesting that the consultation is meaningless.

No decision has been made regarding an option to proceed with in replacing the RW Bruhn Bridge. Consultation feedback from the Ministry’s Open House, as well as pending District of Sicamous consultation, will be completed before moving to the next steps.

The consultation process is not providing enough time for all residents to provide meaningful input and be heard.

Council has requested and received an extension to the public consultation process. The District Sicamous is hosting a Town Hall Meeting on February 21, 2017.

The Main Street option appears to be the cheapest for MOTI but as of yet we have no idea why Council is in favor of this option or what assessment has been done to identify potential consequences of this option. Council is reviewing all of the options with a focus on what offers the most benefit to the community. The expanded process to connect with Sicamous residents and businesses will provide more opportunities to hear directly from the community to assist with final recommendations.
Have each of the proposed options been reviewed individually to assess impacts on the local economy, traffic, community, environment, historic sites, recreation, geotechnical issues and channel engineering? Preliminary design work to date has taken into account traffic projections, environmental impacts, historic sites and archeology, recreational impacts, geotechnical conditions, and navigation requirements.
Has Council already officially endorse Option 3 – the Main Street Bridge approach? No, Council has not provided its official endorsement of any option yet. Council provided some preliminary input early in the process, noting that the public consultation input would be an essential step in its final decision. Council will provide its official endorsement of an option in March 2017, after it has completed the expanded – Sicamous focused – community engagement process.
What are the maintenance costs for Sicamous if the Main Street bridge is built – we have heard that costs could be $400,000 to $500,000 per year? The maintenance costs would not be anywhere near that amount. We are assessing the annual maintenance costs specific to this proposed option.
 

For more information about the Bruhn Bridge project, please contact the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.
Telephone: 250 828-4298
Email: rwbruhnbridge@gov.bc.ca