One of the major vehicle routes into downtown Vancouver will be completely closed this summer to allow for the replacement of an ageing trunk of the natural gas line.
FortisBC says the 10-block span of East 1st Avenue between Clark Drive and Nanaimo Street will be fully closed from mid-June to August 31.
Cut-and-cover trench construction on the roadway is required to install the new line, although major intersections will be trenchless – to keep traffic moving – as the construction method for these areas will involve digging an underground tunnel and then pushing the gas line through.
There will also be additional partial road closures on East 1st Avenue between Nanaimo Street and Boundary Road starting this spring.
It is all part of a 20-km-long construction project running through three municipalities to replace a 20-inch diameter gas line with a new 30-inch line.
Further construction will also be happening in Burnaby from Boundary Road along Graveley Street to Douglas Road and down to Lougheed Highway. It will continue along Lougheed Highway to Bainbridge Avenue, then continue on Broadway to Gaglardy Way and North Road.
And in Coquitlam, the line will run along Como Lake Avenue from North Road to the FortisBC facility at Spuraway Avenue near Mariner Way.
According to FortisBC, the existing line built in the 1950s is nearing the end of its lifespan and upgrades are needed to avoid any potential safety issues.
Construction on the entire stretch will be fully complete by late 2019.