BC hints Coquihalla could reopen earlier than January with update coming this week

Dec 13 2021, 8:01 pm

BC’s Coquihalla Highway could reopen earlier than its forecasted January opening date, Transport Minister Rob Fleming said during a news conference Monday.

He said crews have been working around the clock, and that means the highway could welcome essential vehicles even sooner than expected.

He couldn’t say whether it would be open for Christmas-related travel, but encouraged British Columbians to listen to a scheduled announcement with more details on Wednesday.

“Every day counts in terms of repairs we’re able to make,” Fleming said. “There are some variables, like weather.”

He hopes to give British Columbians a more precise answer on Wednesday.

A record-breaking atmospheric river ripped huge chunks from the Coquihalla and Highway 1 last month. Right now, there’s only one route to the Interior open to commercial traffic along Highway 3.

Crews are doing temporary repairs to the Coquihalla, and the highway won’t be rebuilt to its former standard for several more months.

When it reopens the road will be for essential vehicles only. But at that point, Highway 3 will reopen to all travellers.

Megan DevlinMegan Devlin

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