The bridge that will replace the George Massey Tunnel between Delta and Richmond will be longer than the new Port Mann Bridge. Higher than the new Port Mann Bridge.
And more expensive too.
“It’s a much more complex technical project than even the Port Mann Bridge was,” said Transportation Minister Todd Stone today, explaining the estimated $3 billion pricetag for the project.
“The bridge will actually be a bit longer and at a bit higher. It will be a larger bridge overall than what the Port Mann is, mainly because of the soil conditions that have been encountered. As well as you’re crossing two sections, two different channels of the river at this particular location.”
Stone spoke to reporters on Thursday, a day after Independent MLA Vicki Huntington released a Freedom of Information request revealing a lack of public records surrounding the proposed-mega project, first announced in 2013.
Stone says the government is committed to making documents public to the project – including a business plan, which was originally promised for 2014 – but Huntington is skeptical, given the lack of records so far.
“No business case, no cost benefit analysis, no correspondence. Nothing,” she said.
“Going forward, be as transparent as you like, but we want the supporting documentation.”
The province hopes to begin construction in 2017, with a 2022 completion date. But Richmond Mayor Malcolm Brodie says there are plenty of questions that need to be answered first.
“Exactly how is this bridge going to be financed? And is it going to be tolled – I’m sure it will be – and what are the levels of the tolls? And is it going to be a P3?” he asks.
“We need more information, we need it as soon as possible, so we as a city can respond to this project and really say what we think about it after full analysis.”