The Government of British Columbia announced that a request for qualifications (RFQ) has been issued to replace the aging George Massey Tunnel with a new eight-lane, toll-free immersed tube tunnel.
“This is a major milestone in the project to replace the George Massey Tunnel,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure. “We are making significant progress on this important project that will improve travel times and transit options for people who live on both sides of the Fraser River.”
The Fraser River Tunnel Project (formerly the George Massey Tunnel Replacement) is No. 19 on ReNew’s 2023 Top100 Projects report.
Following the RFQ, the Province will issue a request for proposals (RFP) from a shortlist of qualified teams to select a single proponent to move forward in the procurement process. Concurrently, the project is progressing through the Province’s environmental assessment process. Corridor improvements and construction of a new five-lane Steveston Interchange are already underway.
The new crossing will be an eight-lane immersed tube tunnel with three general-purpose travel lanes and one dedicated transit lane in each direction. The new tunnel will have bike and pedestrian crossings to support active transportation options in the region. The project also includes replacing the existing Deas Slough Bridge as well as the addition of a southbound general-purpose lane on Highway 99 between Westminster Highway in Richmond and Highway 17 in Delta.
With the new tunnel and approaches in place, travel will flow smoothly at 80 kilometres per hour, unlike the current average of 30 kilometres per hour.
The project will be constructed under a project labour agreement, similar to the Steveston Interchange. The project labour agreement will support local jobs, apprentices and training opportunities, as well as maximize participation of groups under-represented in the construction sector.
A new connection for transit buses between Bridgeport Road and Highway 99 southbound has opened, saving transit users minutes on their southbound trips. New bus-on-shoulder lanes south of the tunnel are in construction, which will improve travel times and add to the reliability of transit along the corridor.
The estimated cost of the George Massey Crossing immersed tube tunnel is approximately $4.15 billion.
Featured image: (B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)