Work continues on Highway 1 improvements in Chase with the next phase of construction expected to be tendered soon.
At its Feb. 23 meeting, the Village of Chase council received an update from Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure representatives regarding the Chase West and East phases of an ongoing four-laning project intended, in part, to provide safer access and egress to the community.
Part of the presentation revolved around public engagement and how that’s transpired under the restrictions of COVID-19. Village administrator Joni Heinrich said the ministry sent postcards to residents in the community and in outlying areas with details about where project information can be found online and other contact information. She said the ministry also met with merchants at the Safety Mart Plaza and residents along Brooke Drive, where the ministry plans to build a new interchange to access the community.
“They talked to all of those people and explained where things are at and when they can expect things to be done,” said Heinrich. “They said they got a lot of real positive comments.”
As per its name, the Chase Four-Laning Project will result in the four-laning of 4.9 kilometres of highway from approximately the Harper Lake Road intersection to the west, to the Chase Creek Bridge just west of the Shuswap Avenue intersection. Significant changes involved in the project include the Brooke Drive Interchange, the elimination of highway access at Coburn Street (will be open to emergency vehicles only), and the construction of a new intersection to the west of the community that will replace the existing intersection near the A&W and Petro-Canada gas station.
The Chase West phase of the project is already underway, and Heinrich said MOTI staff indicated the work for the Chase East phase will be tendered soon.
In an email to the Observer, the ministry stated detailed design work and consultation have been ongoing, and the project is anticipated to be tendered this spring.
Heinrich said, overall, feedback from the community about the improvements has been supportive, and she personally is looking forward to completion of the safer highway intersections, as well as the four-laning in general.
“Even the four laning that is existing right now from Kamloops to Chase, it has made a huge difference to our community,” said Heinrich. “We’ve got so much more interest, we’ve got development happening… We are getting some really good interest in Chase because it’s getting easier to access and it’s a shorter time to get to and from Kamloops.”
More information on the Chase Four-Laning Project can be found on the ministry’s website.