The Brownsey Boulevard roundabout project is on time and on budget, say government officials.
The District of Sooke is contributing $3.1 million for the roundabout, which fuses Sooke Road, Brownsey Boulevard and the Evergreen Centre entrance into one loop, which is wide and big enough to accommodate anything from a loaded logging truck to a Ford Lincoln.
The province takes care of the rest with an additional $6 million for a complete revamp of Sooke Road between Otter Point and Church roads. Those improvements include new sidewalks, crosswalks, lighting, curbs, shoulder bike lane and bus shelters. All that in total, to the tune of $9.1 million-worth of work.
Once completed, the roundabout will replace the two stop signs on provide a safe and efficient intersection with Brownsey Boulevard and the Evergreen Centre access, and will see improved crosswalks and lighting.
Delays cropped up early in the project when crews stumbled on unknown underground services. Those problems were soon rectified and the project got back on schedule.
Last week work on the roundabout included relocation of utilities, installation of underground storm drainage, electrical installation to accommodate overhead lighting, final gravel placement for the new roundabout grade and concrete curbs and gutter around the roundabout.
Adjacent to the roundabout, shoulder widening and boulevard construction is occurring in preparation for new sidewalks.
“The ministry’s primary concern is for the safety of the travelling public and construction workers,” said Sonia Lowe, a public affairs officer with the Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure.
“We ask those travelling in the area to be aware of workers and slow down for their safety and follow the directions of traffic control personnel.”
All accesses are being maintained and businesses are open, Lowe said, adding the contractor and the ministry has installed additional signs to encourage residents to support local businesses during construction.
An alternative route has been provided via Wadams Way to help facilitate traffic flow and reduce delays, however the highway will remain open to all vehicle traffic. Truck traffic is still required to travel through downtown Sooke.
Mayor Maja Tait is happy with the progress of the project.
“I would always like things to be faster, but I understand we’re making progress, so that’s good,” she said.
Work on the Brownsey Boulevard roundabout project is expected to be completed by mid-October..