Highway 1 reopened through the Fraser Valley between Chilliwack and Abbotsford at 2 p.m. (Pacific time), Nov. 25, following cleanup, repairs and geotechnical assessments of the highway and its structures.
This reopening will help connect the Lower Mainland through to Highway 3 and the Interior. While this will help to reduce congestion on Highway 7, travel restrictions will remain in place on Highway 7 to ensure the safe movement of essential goods and services.
Minister of Transportation Rob Fleming announced the reopening during an afternoon briefing on the latest flood conditions and recovery efforts across the province.
“We’ve had geotechnical engineers confirm that the road is safe for travel,” Fleming said. “This will provide a lot of welcome congestion relief and mobility for the region.”
Although it is not subject to the essential travel order, people are asked to stay off Highway 1 through Abbotsford unless necessary. Drivers can expect slow traffic with reduced speed limits. When the highway reopens, the interchange at No. 3 Road will not be accessible due to closures on the municipal road network.
“We hope and expect that Highway 1 will be able to remain open, but we will be constantly monitoring its performance and if necessary we may have to close the highway again because safety is always our first priority,” added Fleming.
Commercial vehicles over 63,500 kilograms are prohibited from travelling on Highway 1 between Abbotsford and Chilliwack at this time.
Highway 1 through the Fraser Valley and Fraser Canyon was closed by flooding and debris slides on Sunday, Nov. 14.
Repairs to Highway 1 at the Sumas River Bridge were completed on Nov. 24, after the westbound approach failed during the heavy rain events. Additional repairs along the highway corridor will be ongoing throughout the coming weeks.
The section of Highway 1 through Bridal Falls between Highway 9 and Hope was reopened the evening of Nov. 20. This section of highway remains one lane in each direction for essential travel only, with cleanup and repairs ongoing.
Into the Fraser Canyon, Highway 1 between Hope and Boothroyd, just east of Boston Bar, has been open since Nov. 21. Highway 1 remains closed from Boothroyd through to Spences Bridge and damage assessments are ongoing.
Environment and Climate Change Canada has special weather statements in effect for Metro Vancouver and the Fraser Valley, Squamish to Whistler and the Sunshine Coast from now into next week. Flood conditions may arise in the areas over the period of these storms. The River Forecast Centre has issued high streamflow advisories for all regions of the Coast.
Featured image: Highway 1 reopened through the Fraser Valley between Chilliwack and Abbotsford, Nov. 25. (BC Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure)