Open House to Explore Brunette Interchange Options

Although there are some people who live in New Westminster who would rather have all links from neighbouring communities completely severed, that doesn’t appear to be one of the options being considered by BC’s Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.

Brunette Interchange
Brunette Interchange

There will be two open houses at which the public’s feedback regarding the future Brunette Interchange on Highway 1 will be “heard”.

A third open house will be scheduled for later in the year to give the public additional time to review the designs and ask ministry staff questions.

There are three design options for the future interchange, which will be presented at the open houses.

Option A: Brunette Interchange with Separate Municipal Connections and United Blvd. Connection – The main crossing of Highway 1 is separated into two corridors – a two- lane corridor for local traffic and a four-lane corridor for regional and provincial traffic.

Option B: Blue Mountain Interchange with United Blvd. Connection – This option extends Blue Mountain St. over Highway 1 to United Blvd. Interchanges become the main access to Highway 1.

Option C: Blue Mountain Interchange with Braid Industrial Area Connector – The direct connection between United Blvd. and Brunette is replaced by a two-lane connection from Blue Mountain St. to Columbia St. via a new connector with a two lane tunnel under the rail lines and Brunette River.

Members of the public are welcome to attend the open houses scheduled for:

  • First open house: Wednesday, Nov. 2, at Maillard Middle school, 1300 Rochester Ave, Coquitlam from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

  • Second open house: Thursday, Nov. 3, at Sapperton Pensioners Hall, 318 Keary St., New Westminster from 5 p.m. to 8 p.m.

  • Third open house: Early December. The ministry will provide details on the third open house once it has been scheduled.

Ministry staff will be on hand to answer questions.

In addition, the B.C. government has launched a new public engagement website, for people to learn more information about the project and to provide feedback online. To go to the new website, click here: http://engage.gov.bc.ca/brunetteinterchange/

Race Car Drivers and Commuting 

The following is an open letter to the young man driving the hopped up import car with the super fat muffler that sounds like a jet engine running down the street in front of me. Seriously dude, you remind me of a young Mario Andretti. Maybe even an Al Unser. You control your car in a way that is rarely seen on our city streets.

The way that you are able to weave in and out of traffic at such an incredible rate of speed is absolutely amazing.

You are able to come up behind a vehicle at an incredible rate of speed and then wheel around them so amazingly quickly. Your reflexes are second to none.

And your ability to follow behind somebody else’s car, not even a few centimetres off their back bumper? Wow. You are amazing. Your reflexes must be superhuman.

And of course the car you’re driving is an amazing piece of engineering as well.

Your tinted windows make it almost impossible to see who’s inside, but I know when you pass me in your race car, I know that you are one incredible driver. It really is too bad you are not on a real track.

I love the fact that your car is so hopped up that it would be a natural for the race track. You have it lowered to within mere centimetres of the road. And those low-profile tires? Wow. Again. You are amazing. And your car is equally amazing.

However, there is bad news for you.

You are not actually on a race track. And the people driving cars around you? They are not nearly as qualified and competent behind the wheel as you are.

In fact, some of the drivers, even people like me, are not giving their full attention to the road.

Some of us are sleep deprived. Some of us are worried about our kids or our jobs or the cup of coffee we are trying to balance on the steering wheel while watching the road and mediating a fight that the kids in the back seat are having, and trying to ignore the fact that we are probably going to be late for work because the kids could not find their clothes and are therefore distracted from the actual race event that you believe you are in.

Yes it’s true, distracted driving means more than just using a mobile phone in the car.

Even though you are an amazing human being who has the ability to control your hopped up, super engineered race car, the vast majority of other people on the road are a bunch of distracted slobs driving poorly tuned vans with many other things on their mind than the race that you believe that you are in.

So in short, slow the fuck down, quit tailgating me, and get your noisy piece of shit of a car off the street in front of my house especially when my kids are trying to have a nap.

New Online Traffic Map for Metro Vancouver

Drive BC Map
Drive BC Map

Drivers in Metro Vancouver have a new, real-time traffic map to plan smarter and more efficient journeys.

The traffic map is free to use and accessible online.

The map colour-codes major highways and roads in the Metro Vancouver region according to traffic speeds. Green means traffic is moving well, orange means traffic is slow and red means traffic is very slow.

I spent some time yesterday afternoon monitoring the map and quickly realized that drivers are going to be “seeing red” wherever there is a body of water to cross.

The map also allows partner agencies to study, like I did yesterday, traffic flows in Metro Vancouver. This tool will help with planning to further improve regional road infrastructure and reduce congestion.

Unfortunately I could not find anywhere on the map that points to where the pot of gold is that will be required to pay for the infrastructure upgrades required to ease the congestion.

The map is based on anonymous tracking of cellphone signals using GPS technology. Movement of the cellphone signals generates the real-time traffic flow measurements, which are translated into the online map. In order to maintain privacy, any personal data from cellphones is removed (it was not clear if the American spy agency NSA was removing the personal data or not) before it is used in the map system.

Developed by TransLink, the $1.2-million project, the map covers Highway 1 from Whistler to Chilliwack, Highway 99 from the Peace Arch Border Crossing to Whistler, and all other numbered highways and major roadways in Metro Vancouver.

Give it a try and let me know what you think of it.