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Archived - Roberts Bank Rail Corridor upgrades benefit communities, boost Asia-Pacific trade

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No. H086/11
For release - September 16, 2011

DELTA, B.C. — Today the Honourable Ed Fast, Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway; Linda Reid, Member of the Legislative Assembly for Richmond East, on behalf of the Honourable Blair Lekstrom, British Columbia's Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure; and Robin Silvester, president and CEO of Port Metro Vancouver, joined Delta Mayor Lois E. Jackson and other stakeholders to celebrate the construction of the 80th Street overpass in Delta, an important investment along the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor (RBRC).

The 80th Street overpass is the result of a successful funding partnership valued at $20 million in total costs. The Government of Canada is contributing $7.2 million, the Province of British Columbia $2 million and Port Metro Vancouver $4.8 million. In addition, the Corporation of Delta is providing $1.8 million for construction, as well as $6 million to acquire lands.

"This project is part of our commitment to creating jobs and stimulating economic growth in the region," said Minister Fast. "Once completed, this grade separation will enhance rail operations and accommodate increased road and rail movements along the RBRC, an integral part of Canada's Asia-Pacific Gateway and Corridor."

One of nine projects in the $307-million RBRC Program, the 80th Street overpass, combined with the other projects under the program, will ease traffic congestion in the communities of Delta, Surrey, the City of Langley and the Township of Langley. The program is composed of eight overpasses and one railway siding in a 70-kilometre stretch that connects Roberts Bank, Canada's largest container facility and coal terminal, with the North American rail network. The RBRC is expected to carry increasing volumes of goods from around the world that we use here every day, as well as Canadian exports.

"The 80th Street overpass will improve the quality of life for families by providing safer access in Delta," said MLA Reid. "Today's announcement means the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor project is moving ahead as another successful Pacific Gateway collaboration. By working together with our partners, the provincial government is helping local communities preserve and enhance their quality of life while enhancing trade competitiveness, creating jobs and driving the economy for years to come."

The 80th Street overpass project also includes the recently completed repaving of 72nd Street, the creation of a new signalized intersection at Ladner Trunk Road and 72nd Street, and the provision of an advanced warning system on Ladner Trunk Road to divert motorists to 80th Street in the event of a train blocking 72nd Street.

"This is an excellent example of how partnership and cooperation between all levels of government and the private sector can achieve an outcome that will benefit not only our community but the Lower Mainland's transportation infrastructure," said Mayor Jackson.

The 80th Street overpass will benefit Delta by minimizing traffic delays and providing safe, uninterrupted vehicle access to Boundary Airport — a key service enhancement to the airport and the surrounding industrial areas.

"Along with the port community, we are investing $50 million in overpasses to improve safety and to separate road and rail traffic along the entire Roberts Bank Rail Corridor, from Delta to Langley," said Mr. Silvester. "We are pleased to work with our funding partners to advance infrastructure projects, like the 80th Street overpass, which benefit communities and support Canadian trade and jobs in the most sustainable way."

Delta is the project delivery proponent and currently expects that the project will be delivered on time and on budget. The overpass is scheduled for completion by June 2012.

– 30 –


Rudy Husny
Press Secretary
Office of the Honourable Ed Fast
Minister of International Trade and Minister for the Asia-Pacific Gateway, Ottawa

Media Relations
Transport Canada, Ottawa

Kate Trotter
Government Communications and Public Engagement
British Columbia Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure

The Office of Mayor Lois E. Jackson
The Corporation of Delta

Barbara Joy-Kinsella
Government Relations and Media Relations Advisor
Port Metro Vancouver

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The Roberts Bank Rail Corridor (RBRC) Program is a comprehensive package of road and rail improvements funded through a unique collaboration of 12 public- and private-sector partners.

The $307-million program is designed to improve the safety and efficiency of the road and rail network, and 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 partners, including Transport Canada, the B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure, TransLink, Port Metro Vancouver, the B.C. Corporation of Delta, the City of Surrey, the City of Langley, the Township of Langley, CN Rail, Canadian Pacific, British Columbia Railway Company and Burlington Northern Santa Fe Railway, are working proactively to improve road access and safety for local residents by providing alternate routes over busy railways.

Improvement projects have been identified for delivery, including eight overpasses and a rail siding project. Other rail improvements will limit 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.

September 2011

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