The George Massey Tunnel is a critical component of a transportation network that supports the local, regional and provincial economies, as well as facilitating trade through the Asia-Pacific Gateway. Since the Tunnel opened in 1959, Metro Vancouver’s population and economy have grown significantly. As a result, traffic congestion and safety at the George Massey Tunnel have become major issues, and Delta, Surrey, ICBA and others have worked tirelessly to make it a priority issue for the provincial government. A new crossing is urgently needed to improve safety, reduce vehicle collisions and improve emergency response times at the existing George Massey tunnel.
A properly-sized replacement will improve safety and security for traffic, pedestrians and cyclists, cause fewer impacts on agricultural land, fewer disturbances on the Fraser River, fewer construction risks and greater cost and schedule certainty. Building a new crossing, and removing the old tunnel, also creates opportunities for environmental and community improvements to the Fraser River, and at Deas Island Park and Deas Slough. The bridge would create 9,000 direct construction jobs over five years.
While the NDP Government has said it will build a new tunnel there, it will not include any added capacity for vehicles, nor does it include any provision for SkyTrain or light rail. Further, the government hasn’t yet budgeted a single dollar for the new crossing anyway.