Highway barriers similar to these placed between Spallumcheen and Armstrong on Highway 97A are being tweaked or removed to allow for easier highway access for large commercial vehicles at the intersection of Pleasant Valley Road in Spallumcheen. (Black Press file photo)

Highway barriers similar to these placed between Spallumcheen and Armstrong on Highway 97A are being tweaked or removed to allow for easier highway access for large commercial vehicles at the intersection of Pleasant Valley Road in Spallumcheen. (Black Press file photo)

Spallumcheen highway barriers placed recently are now being adjusted or removed

Intersection being made larger for safer commercial vehicle access to Hwy 97A from PV Road

They were only put in place a few months ago.

Now, a number of concrete median barriers on Highway 97A at Pleasant Valley Road in Spallumcheen are being tweaked or removed to make way for commercial trucks.

Barriers were placed along a nearly six-kilometre stretch of Highway 97A between Pleasant Valley Road and Smith Drive in Armstrong in the spring of 2021.

An Armstrong resident posed the question as to why barriers were being taken out on the Armstrong Community Information Group Facebook forum.

“After receiving feedback from the local trucking industry, the ministry (transportation and infrastructure) is opening up the intersection to allow larger commercial vehicles to more safely enter Highway 97A from Pleasant Valley Road,” said the ministry in an email to Black Press.

“This change requires barriers at this location to be adjusted, with some being removed.”

The ministry’s consultation was a targeted local approach, aimed particularly at people who would lose some of their direct access onto Highway 97A with the installation of median barriers.

“The modifications we are making at this location are specifically to better and more safely accommodate extra-ordinary loads (loads that are longer, wider or higher than normal) that require special authorizations or permits,” said the ministry in a second reply to Black Press.

We are making these adjustments within the original project budget ($1.1 million) as a result of feedback from the trucking industry.”

Work is scheduled to be complete by Friday, July 9.

Drivers can expect minor delays to allow for the safe completion of this work. Updates will be available at DriveBC.ca.

In July 2020, the ministry announced a goal of improving safety for residents, commercial truck drivers and tourists, and identified sections of highly travelled highways where barriers would improve safety and prevent head-on collisions and crossover incidents.

Then-minister Claire Trevena said installing median barriers along sections of the highway “ensures an added layer of protection for travellers.”

This story was updated Thursday, July 8, at 2:06 p.m. with the ministry’s reply to the consultation process

READ MORE: Province to install highway barriers between Armstrong, Vernon

READ MORE: Safety barriers en route to Okanagan highways



roger@vernonmorningstar.com

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Road conditionsTransportation