To capitalize on Port Metro Vancouver’s increasingly strategic location within the global supply chain, an unprecedented investment in infrastructure development is being made in the Vancouver Gateway’s transportation corridor and port-related lands.
Through the Gateway Improvement Program (GIP), Port Metro Vancouver and its partners are leveraging and extending provincial and federal funding. The GIP is a $717 million capital investment that targets supply chain improvements along the rail and road corridors within three trade areas: North Shore, South Shore and the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor.
“The opportunity we have, at this time, to enhance efficiency of traffic flow across the Gateway is incredible,” says Cliff Stewart, Acting Vice-President of Infrastructure Delivery at Port Metro Vancouver. “Industry, governments and other stakeholders are in agreement that the value of what we’re each getting out of these improvements far exceeds the cost that each of us is putting in.”
Crews are hard at work in the North Shore Trade Area, which will next year see the completion of the $100 million Low Level Road Project, of which nearly $32 million has been contributed by Port Metro Vancouver and industry partners. The Low Level Road Project, led by Port Metro Vancouver, provides significant improvements to the east-west connector that will streamline traffic movements, provide space for additional rail capacity, address safety concerns and reduce noise in the local community by closing three at-grade rail crossings.
“Everyone gets value in this project,” says Stewart. He adds that the project is currently on budget and schedule, with completion scheduled for the fall of 2014.
Work is well underway on the two projects designated for the South Shore Trade Area, representing an investment of $127 million, of which $58 million was contributed by the Port and industry partners. One of the two projects is the $75 million South Shore Corridor Project, led by Port Metro Vancouver, which includes construction of an elevated roadway along Stewart Street that spans 10 of 14 at-grade rail crossings, as well as construction of a pedestrian overpass. The foundations and steel girders for the elevated roadway are now in place and the elevated roadway is expected to be open by the end of 2013, with remaining construction expected to be complete in Spring 2014. Once completed, the improvements will allow for the use of longer trains and provide space for additional rail capacity. The elevated structure will significantly reduce traffic congestion and provide better access to South Shore terminals and facilities.
“The days of trucks being held up by trains are coming to an end,” Stewart says.
Projects within the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor are all proceeding on schedule and on budget. Port Metro Vancouver contributed $50 million in prefunding towards the total investment of $307 million. All but one of the nine projects involve grade separations that will reduce the impact of train traffic on roads, allowing for smoother flow of commercial and local vehicle traffic within this busy transit corridor. The 232nd Street Overpass Project in Langley, being delivered by the Port, involves construction of a $25 million two-lane overpass that will improve local traffic flow by eliminating an at-grade vehicle crossing and allow rail lines to run longer trains where they couldn’t before.
“Work is proceeding well and we’re on target to complete in Spring 2014,” Stewart says.
Major investments to further enhance infrastructure in the Vancouver Gateway are already underway or in the planning stages. The Port’s terminals operators have also been undertaking various projects over the past year in order to create an ideal environment for business growth.
DP World Vancouver
Centerm was the first to introduce a short-sea shipping service between its terminal in Vancouver and Duke Point on Vancouver Island, which increases the efficiency of the logistics chain for our customers. And by setting up the first full container operation on the Island, we’re giving them direct access to the market on the Island.
Maksim Mihic, General Manager
Fraser Surrey Docks
Fraser Surrey Docks work closely with our customers and the Port to create forward thinking and progressive solutions to cargo movements. We constantly look at the trends and changes in the marketplace to ensure we are positioning our services to support the requirements of the future.
Bill Wehnert, Vice-President, Sales and Marketing
TSI Terminal Services Inc.
TSI Terminals Services Inc. continues to expand intermodal capacity and make substantial investment in terminal equipment upgrades with the recent purchase of a RTG (rubber tire gantry) crane at Deltaport and a new terminal operating system implemented at Vanterm in April. Our service-level agreements and continued collaboration with supply chain partners illustrates our commitment to meeting our customers’ needs as a competitive and reliable service provider.
Eric Waltz, President