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Broadway corridor revamp seeks to avoid Canada Line construction chaos

Last Updated Mar 6, 2019 at 2:02 pm PDT

File photo: SkyTrain. (Chad Harris, CityNews Vancouver)

Vancouver wants your input on its plans for the Broadway Corridor

The city says it is taking a new approach to avoid the pitfalls and headaches of the Canada Line

The plan includes the entire area from Clark Drive to Vine Street between 1st and 16th Avenue

VANCOUVER (NEWS 1130) – As the City of Vancouver gears up for a major revamp of the area around the future Broadway SkyTrain, it is also looking for public input and ways to avoid a repeat of the Canada Line and Cambie corridor construction chaos.

The proposed plan would run east-west from Clark Drive to Vine Street, and north-south from 1st Avenue to 16th Avenue.

Unlike the Canada Line, revitalization in the area will happen at the same time the subway line is being built.

“By taking an earlier and a broader look here in the Broadway planning process we can have a lot more variety and a lot more space to kind of step development down, get a mix of uses in and think kind of more holistically,” said Gil Kelley, Vancouver’s general manager of planning, urban design and sustainability.

The change may cut down construction time, meaning fewer headaches for commuters, people who live in the area and businesses.

Following the completion of the Canada Line in 2009, several Cambie-area businesses filed class action lawsuits against several bodies including Canada Line Rapid Transit Inc., contractor SNC-Lavalin, TransLink and others seeking compensation for lost profits and other hardships experienced during construction along Cambie Street.

Rebuilding of the areas around the Canada Line came after construction, creating problems, according to Kelley.

“Here’s an opportunity to get ahead of that, and to make sure that we’re doing the land use planning alongside the completion of the engineering work and prior to construction of the Broadway subway,” he said.

Green Party coun. Pete Fry also wants to curb land speculation along the proposed corridor and has prepared a motion for an “Emergency Interim Zoning” that creates a temporary moratorium on new rezoning applications in parts of the Kitsilano and Point Grey neighbourhoods along the line.

Unlike the cheaper cut and cover method that created massive holes in the roads to build the Canada Line, the Broadway line will be built by the more expensive method of tunneling, according to the city.

During construction, several TransLink trolley bus routes will have short detours along 12th Avenue. The detours will not impact the 99 B-Line.

“The line itself will be tunneled but the stations will have some surface construction built,” manager of engineering services Jerry Dobrovolny said. “We’re going to maintain travel lanes, but there will be surface construction. In order to facilitate that, some of the trolley lines need to be redirected.”

The city will get public input over the next 22 months to hammer out the specific details of the plan before presenting a final project to council late next year.

An online survey is available on the city’s website while open houses for public consultations are

Mar. 7, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. City Lab, 511 West Broadway

Mar. 8, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. City Lab, 511 West Broadway

Mar 9, 12 p.m. – 4 p.m. City Lab, 511 West Broadway

Mar. 13, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Kitsilano Neighbourhood House, 2305 West 7th Avenue

Mar. 14, 3 p.m. – 7 p.m. Kingsgate Mall, 370 East Broadway