The first of nine projects in the $307-million Roberts Bank Rail Corridor (RBRC) Program has been completed with the newly built 41B Street overpass.

The Corridor has about 66 road/rail crossings, consisting of overpasses and street-level crossings. About 388,000 vehicles per day cross the tracks, and this number is estimated to increase to 560,000 vehicles per day by 2021.

The RBRC Program consists of a comprehensive package of road and rail improvements in a 70-kilometre stretch south of Vancouver that connects Deltaport, Canada’s largest container facility, and Westshore, Canada’s major coal terminal, with the North American rail network. It is designed to improve the safety and efficiency of the road and rail network. It will also enhance the quality of life for residents of communities through which rail traffic travels to and from Port Metro Vancouver terminals at Roberts Bank in Delta.

The Program is funded by 12 public- and private-sector partners: Transport Canada, the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, TransLink, Port Metro Vancouver, the Corporation of Delta, the City of Surrey, the City of Langley, the Township of Langley, CN, CP Rail, British Columbia Railway Company and BNSF Railway

“The Program exemplifies the Asia-Pacific Gateway strategy in action,” said President and CEO of Port Metro Vancouver, Robin Silvester. “Working together with the federal and provincial governments, we are advancing infrastructure projects that will benefit the community, and support Canadian trade and jobs in the most sustainable way possible.”

“Demand for Canadian exports in Asia-Pacific markets continues to grow at a rapid rate, and investments such as these along the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor are furthering Canada’s competitive advantages,” said Ed Fast, minister of international trade and minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway. “With the completion of the 41B overpass and, eventually, the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor overall, we are strengthening Canada’s Asia-Pacific Gateway, while positioning the West Coast as the corridor of choice between Canada and the high-growth Asia-Pacific markets.”

The eight overpasses and one rail siding project in the RBRC Program are scheduled to be completed by 2014. Other rail improvements will reduce whistle blowing, close rail crossings and provide an advanced early warning system that will notify drivers of approaching trains. These improvements will also reduce vehicle idling time and greenhouse gas emissions.

British Columbia’s trade with Asia is increasing through Canada’s Pacific Gateway. Pacific Gateway partners have committed $22 billion to expand and enhance port, rail, road and airport infrastructure in the Pacific Gateway to meet those growing demands.