River Parkway to transform Richmond traffic flow
05 September 2018
Construction will begin this fall on River Parkway, an important new transportation link that will transform traffic flow within Richmond’s City Centre. A ceremonial ground breaking for the project was held today (Wednesday, September 5). Construction will begin later this fall and completion is anticipated for early 2020.
“The opening of River Parkway will provide a huge improvement to traffic flow throughout north Richmond,” said Mayor Malcolm Brodie. “It will provide a great new option for motorists, cyclists and pedestrians travelling to and through the City Centre. It will also facilitate eventual development of the new Lulu Island Park, a major new 37-acre waterfront park along the Middle Arm that will serve residents, workers and tourists within the City Centre.”
The project entails further northward extension of River Parkway from Gilbert Road, along the former railway corridor to Cambie Road near No. 3 Road. It is a key component in fulfilling Richmond’s City Centre Area Plan, which called for the creation of a comprehensive network of additional links in and around the downtown area to improve traffic mobility and alleviate congestion on existing routes.
The estimated cost of the overall River Parkway project is $13.2 million with secured funding from TransLink of about $2.55 million towards the cycling and pedestrian components of the overall project. Funding for the balance of the project is sourced from Roads Development Cost Charges (DCCs).
“TransLink is proud to support such an important project in the city of Richmond,” said TransLink CEO Kevin Desmond. “Our mandate is to make it easier for people to get around the region regardless of how they travel. The River Parkway project will build some great new walking and cycling connections, and help people to connect to Canada Line.”
An initial section of River Parkway has already been constructed in association with new development in the area. Extending River Parkway will:
• enhance traffic operations of the existing River Road-Gilbert Road intersection by eliminating the interim River Road connection next to Dinsmore Bridge;
• improve overall traffic circulation in the City Centre by providing a continuous viable alternate route to No. 3 Road and existing River Road;
• facilitate the development of Lulu Island Park as well as access improvement for abutting properties;
• advance the completion of the north loop road as part of the ultimate City Centre road network; and
• support the City’s commitment to reduce vehicle trips and encourage alternative modes of transportation by improving cycling and pedestrian infrastructure along the corridor.
River Parkway project will initially comprise a two-lane road and separate bike lanes protected from the adjacent vehicle lane with delineator posts. Additional project elements include paved walkways for pedestrians; a signalized connection at Leslie Road; new traffic signals with universally-accessible crosswalks at all intersections; new streetlights along its length; and an off-street multi-use path on the south side of Cambie Road between River Road and No. 3 Road to enhance pedestrian and cycling access between the Middle Arm Greenway, River Parkway, and the Aberdeen Canada Line Station.
The ultimate standard, which will be achieved through future re-development of abutting properties, comprises a four-lane major arterial road with centre median, curb and gutter, treed boulevard, off-street bike paths, and sidewalks. Once River Parkway is complete, an existing section of River Road running from Gilbert Road to Cambie Road, will eventually be closed to allow for the development of the 37-acre Lulu Island Park.
The River Parkway extension builds upon other complementary road projects completed within the past several years to provide enhanced traffic flow and support development growth in this area of City Centre including :
• Gilbert Road: widening from two to four lanes and on-street bike lanes between Lansdowne Road and Dinsmore Bridge.
• River Road: widening from two to four lanes between Hollybridge Way and Gilbert Road.
• Cedarbridge Way: extension between Alderbridge Way and River Parkway.
• Lansdowne Road: extension between Minoru Boulevard and Alderbridge Way; creating a continuous direct connection from Hollybridge Way to Garden City Road.
• Ackroyd Road-Elmbridge Way: extension between No. 3 Road and Minoru Boulevard.
• Pearson Way: direct connection to Hollybridge Way (South).