Ministry of Transportation holds open house on proposed highway bypass around Quesnel

Quesnel Downtown Association: bypass is ‘best possible design to accommodate downtown core’

Quesnel Downtown Association president Mitch Vik. File photo

The tremendous snow storm that hammered Quesnel on Feb. 7 definitely threw a wet blanket on the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure (MOTI) open house at the Quesnel & District Seniors’ Centre.

The roads were treacherous as snow removal equipment couldn’t keep up with Old Man Winter.

Sidewalks were also dicey. Parking lots had close a foot-and-a-half of snow on them.

All of this and warnings about not going out resulted in about 50 people showing up for the one-on-one meeting with MOTI representatives.

Fortunately, MOTI reps had meetings with various community leaders earlier in the day before the snow storm really got going.

The executive and directors of the Quesnel Downtown Association (QDA) were among those who heard the MOTI presentation on the Highway 97 Safety Improvement in the City of Quesnel project.

QDA president Mitch Vik was very impressed with what he saw and heard.

“In the terms of the QDA’s position, we support this project wholeheartedly. We feel times are certainly different than they were a generation ago [when there was significant opposition] to a bypass.

“This interconnector is a great solution. It keeps the downtown core very close by and there’s excellent access from the north and south to downtown.

“We feel this was the best possible design to accommodate in the downtown core.”

Vik says the interconnector, which will flow by the city, will stop the transport trucks from going through the city core and that will provide safety and better air quality.

“We have to move forward in some [significant way] and this plan does that. Yes, we’re totally on board.”

When Front Street is devolved from Ministry of Transportation, Vik notes it will become a municipal responsibility.

“By us inheriting Front Street, it will give the City so much more autonomy in the design of that road, traffic flow and projects that may end up on that road,” he adds.

“There’s talk about waterfront development in the future and talk about giving restaurants more [viewscape] on Front Street if this was to happen.

“It would be a game changer for a pedestrian-friendly area, which is, frankly, why a lot of downtown cores that want to survive are embracing those concepts.”

The QDA president says you can’t always think about the cars first. People want to have an experience when they come downtown, and this will help with that.

“The QDA will be supporting this with a letter-writing campaign, or whatever is required of us.”

Vik says the QDA executive had a quick huddle after the MOTI presentation and the consensus was that this is good for the community.

“It’s good for downtown Quesnel and it’s a vehicle to move our community forward again, and keep it moving forward.

“We need this new infrastructure; we needed a new rink and we got that; we need a new arts centre and that’s in process.

“This continues that investment in Quesnel and we need it and we support it.

“We are not going to be standing in its way.”

Vik encourages all residents who were not able to attend the open house to go online at www.gov.bc.ca/quesneltransportationstudy and look at the options and provide their feedback by the Feb. 21, 2018 deadline.

Just Posted

Barriere Outdoor Club host a day for grade 8 students on snowshoes

The Grade 8’s ski and snowshoe program wrapped up their final lesson… Continue reading

District of Barriere addressing concerns regarding RV parking in the municipality

North Thompson Star/Journal District of Barriere CAO Colleen Hannigan reported to the… Continue reading

Heavy snow fall hits valley once again

There seems to have been plenty of snow come down this winter… Continue reading

Kamloops-Thompson district says school followed policy on assault complaint

By Dale Bass Kamloops This Week Kamloops-Thompson school district Supt. Alison Sidow… Continue reading

Life. We don’t want you to miss it.

The Heart & Stroke Foundation is working hard to ensure more people have more moments.

REPLAY: B.C. this week in video

In case you missed it, here’s a look at replay-worthy highlights from across the province this week

How to keep local news visible in your Facebook feed

Facebook has changed the news feed to emphasize personal connections. You might see less news.

Canucks came out hot, beat Bruins 6-1

Loui Eriksson scores twice, catapulting Vancouver to a lopsided victory over Boston

B.C. man brings dog to court as ‘best witness’

Man is defending himself on charges of uttering threats, possessing weapon for dangerous purposes

Vancouver artist’s cartoon of Florida school shooting resonates

Cartoon shows football coach, one of the victims, meeting others killed in school shootings

Trudeau family arrives in India for state visit

Seven-day visit includes meeting with Indian Prime Minister Narendra Modi

Military seeks DNA experts to help ID missing war dead

Federal program recovers, identifies and arranges burials for Canada’s nearly 28,000 missing war dead

B.C. files new legal action against TransMountain pipeline

Province tries to uphold City of Burnaby bylaws, provoking Alberta

BCHL Today: Powell River stuns Vernon and BCHL grads lead Team Canada

BCHL Today is a (near) daily look at what’s going on around the league and the junior A world.

Most Read