Easing congestion in Surrey and Langley will boost Asia-Pacific Gateway's competitive advantage
For release - October 19, 2012
Minister Fast delivers remarks at event to mark construction of the Combo Project in Surrey, B.C. on October 19, 2012.
(Left to right): Township of Langley Councillors David Davies and Grant Ward, Township of Langley Mayor Jack Frose, Minister Ed Fast, City of Langley Mayor Peter Fassbender, City of Langley Councillors Teri James and Gayle Martin.
SURREY, BRITISH COLUMBIA — Construction of the Combo Project, an important investment along the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor (RBRC), was celebrated today by the Honourable Ed Fast, Canada's Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway; the Honourable Mary Polak, B.C. Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure; Mayor Dianne Watts, City of Surrey; Mayor Peter Fassbender, City of Langley; Mayor Jack Froese, Township of Langley; and Robin Silvester, President and CEO of Port Metro Vancouver as well as other stakeholders.
The project involves the construction of rail crossing overpasses at 192nd Street, 54th Avenue and 196th Street in Surrey, B.C., which will increase road capacity while addressing the needs expressed by these communities to reduce delays and mitigate the impacts of increasing commercial traffic. These new road-rail grade separations will enhance rail operations and accommodate anticipated growth in rail and road traffic along the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor.
"Investments in projects along the Roberts Rail Bank Corridor are improving the flow of traffic, enhancing the efficiency of the transportation system, bringing benefits to B.C.'s Lower Mainland and contributing to Canada's global competitiveness," said Minister Fast. "The federal government is committed to continuing to work productively with our partners as we build on the success that has made the Asia-Pacific Gateway the gateway of choice between fast-growing Asia-Pacific markets and North America."
"B.C.'s increasing trade with Asia means more jobs, but also more traffic through our communities," said Minister Polak. "We have heard about congestion from residents and that's why B.C. is joining our Roberts Bank partners in investing in the Combo Project. The overpasses will ensure residents can travel safely, with minimal delays and impacts on their quality of life and will provide a reliable route for transit and first responders."
"The Roberts Bank Rail Corridor project is an important infrastructure partnership that will improve the safety and efficiency of the region's transportation network, enhance trade and economic development, and eliminate vehicle delays at crossings," added Mayor Watts.
"Today's RBRC announcement supports growing trade and the local economic benefits that come with that; and importantly eases the impact of a growing port on local communities," said Mr. Silvester. "Today's announcement is collaboration in action with all levels of government and industry working together to ensure British Columbians realize the maximum benefit of international trade."
The total cost of this project is estimated at $121.5 million, including $43 million from the Government of Canada's Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor Initiative, $25.6 million from Port Metro Vancouver, $25.5 from the Province of British Columbia, $13.6 from the City of Surrey, $8.3 from the City of Langley and $5.5 from the Township of Langley.
The Combo Project groups three of the nine project components in the $307-million RBRC program, with a federal contribution of up to $75 million. The program is comprised of multiple partners including the Government of Canada, the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, the City of Surrey, the City of Langley, the Township of Langley, the Corporation of Delta, Port Metro Vancouver, Translink and four railway companies (BNSF, B.C. Rail, CN Rail and CP Rail) working together to support projects that connect Roberts Bank, Canada's largest container facility and coal terminal, with the North American rail network.
The Combo Project will improve access for drivers in Surrey, the City of Langley and the Township of Langley and help the RBRC carry the increasing volumes of goods from around the world that we use here every day, as well as Canadian exports.
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