Driving in the dark and rain can be a hazardous pursuit, but Highway 14 remains one of the most challenging stretches of road on the Island despite $10 million in improvments. (file photo)

Highway 14 improvements leave room for more

The highway remains a challenging stretch of road

It’s a new year and the days are finally getting longer, allowing for the promise of a time when the drive down highway 14 might be made in something other than Stygian darkness.

But those who are hoping for any significant improvement to what some have called one of the most dangerous arterial routes on the Island may have to wait a little bit longer.

“We’re still looking at a number of options for improving the reliability and safety of mobility on the 14 Corridor,” said Janelle Staite, Deputy Director of the Ministry of Transportation.

“We have to look at what is the most viable from a cost/benefit perspective.”

Staite stressed that significant improvements have already been made to the route in 2018, but acknowledged that much more needs to be done.

Last year began with the news of a fatal crash on the highway on Dec. 29 of 2017, prompting an outcry from Mayor Stew Young of Langford for immediate improvements to the stretch of road where serious accidents have become a regular occurrence.

In June, the Ministry hosted an open house in Sooke where they solicited input on what improvements were needed to the roadway.

RELATED: Open house turnout disappointing

“We know that more needs to be done, but we’re still finishing $10 million of work that was initiated last year.”

Staite noted that $1 million went to creating three new bus pull-outs in areas that had been identified as having the largest ridership and that a new rest area had been constructed on the highway to allow vehicles to pull off and allow traffic to pass as well as provide a rest location for frazzled drivers.

“We’ve improved the Sooke River Road intersection and have made considerable improvements in the east side of the Sooke River Bridge,” noted Staite.

“And we’ve added a slow vehicle pullout west of Sooke at Muir Creek and we’ve made a big investment at Roche Cover on Gillespie Road.”

In response to the criticism that the highway’s lane markings tend to disappear in when it is dark and raining, Staite responded that it was a concern that the Ministry was aware of and had responded by having a complete refresh of the lane markings, making them wider and improving the glass bead markers in some areas to further delineate the lanes.

“It’s not feasible at this point to consider the creation of an alternate route into Sooke. What we’re doing is working through a series of incremental improvements to improve safety,” said Staite.

“And, of course, the best idea is always to drive at a safe speed that allows for the road conditions.”



mailto:tim.collins@sookenewsmirror.com

Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Just Posted

Sooke mayor travels to Cambodia to empower women in politics

The trip is part of a Global Affairs Canada initiative

Sooke approves new toilets for popular park

Whiffin Spit loos will have to wait

WATCH: Self serve doggy-wash poised to change dog grooming industry

Add money, start spraying to wash dog in the K9000

UVic dumpster divers raise awareness for food waste

Eating only from dumpsters, the students hope to raise money for food banks in Northern Canada

Rowing Canada will keep its oars in Saanich, say officials

Rowing club official says financial impact of Rowing Canada’s decision still unknown

B.C. opioid crisis to get same world-renowned treatment approach as HIV/AIDS

A program that focuses on treatment as prevention will roll out Jan. 17

Barack Obama to speak at Vancouver event

Former U.S. president will speak with board of trade in March

Former welfare clients still owed money, B.C. Ombudsperson says

Investigation found 2,600 people docked illegally for earning income

Prince George could get province’s second BC Cannabis Store

The first brick-and-mortar government retail location opened in Kamloops on Oct. 17

B.C. chowdery caught up in ‘rat-in-soup’ scandal to close

Crab Park Chowdery will be shutting down Jan. 20

Teen vaping is an epidemic: US government

E-cigarettes are now the top high-risk substance used by teenagers, outpacing cigarettes, alcohol, marijuana

Vancouver councillors unanimously approve motion declaring climate emergency

Vancouver joins cities like Los Angeles and London

Caribou herd disappears from Kootenays after last cow relocated

One cow from the South Selkirk herd and two from the Purcells were moved this week

Cop recounts wild car chase through Ladysmith and Duncan

B.C. Supreme Court trial of Armaan Singh Chandi hears of pursuit following Nanaimo drive-by shooting

Most Read