(Cartoon by Gabriele Venditti)

EDITORIAL: Safe water should trump traffic plan

Emergency Malahat route through Sooke watershed a non-starter

Let’s face it.

Most of us are inextricably tied to the belief that we have a basic human right to get where we’re going in the comfort of our own vehicles.

There are a lot of problems associated with that concept, not the least of which is the fact that our transportation routes have frequently proven unable to keep up with the ever-increasing number of cars making their way down what, in essence, are updated wagon trails.

Highway 14, with it’s roller-coaster-like series of twists and turns is the only real viable route in and out of Sooke, and despite a claimed $10 million in improvements, any trip on that stretch on a dark, rainy night still inspires the sort of white-knuckle, soul-sucking fear generally reserved for Wes Craven film festivals or a three-day visit from the in-laws.

The Malahat is a little better, as evidenced by the fact that accidents on that route regularly lead to hours-long shutdowns that drive frustrated drivers to distraction.

RELATED: An alternate route for Malahat shouldn’t go through Sooke watershed, says CRD director

Improvements are needed and it’s clear that an alternate emergency route around the Malahat seems like a no-brainer.

But not so fast.

The recent suggestion to explore an alternate route through the Sooke Water Supply Area is a wrong-headed step too far.

RELATED: Malahat closed an average of once per month, says Transportation Ministry

The proposal is to explore a route though a land reserve that is currently out of bounds to pretty much everyone by virtue of the fact that it is the site of the Sooke Reservoir. That’s where much of the drinking water for the CRD (including Sooke) is held.

The flippant observations of Chris Foord, the vice chair of the CRD Traffic Commission, were less than inspiring when he referenced to the 40,000 litres of diesel that spilled into the water around Goldstream Park some time ago and said that he seriously doubted that the watershed route could do worse.


In response to this proposal, CRD director Mike Hicks, has suggested that we’d be better served by pursuing improvements on the Pacific Marine Circle Route.

We agree.

It’s two hours longer and by no means perfect but at least, once the commute was completed, drivers would still be able to have a drink of water.


Like us on Facebook and follow us on Twitter

Get local stories you won't find anywhere else right to your inbox.
Sign up here

Comments are closed

Just Posted

Sooke’s homeless reflect on housing situation

Ed MacGregor Park a new temporary home for Sooke’s homeless population

Langford approves permit for 124-unit mass timber building

Tallwood 1 to be completed by late 2021

Undercover operation exposes prominent human trafficking problem in Greater Victoria

VicPD’s Operation No More took place in mid-June at a local hotel

Book stores in Victoria notice uptick in sales for anti-racism titles

White Fragility, How to be an Antiracist are among the best selling titles

Victoria man in custody after shooting in 100-block of Gorge Road East

The man is facing recommended charges including assault with a weapon

‘This year is unlike any other’: Trudeau delivers Canada day address

Sophie Gregoire Trudeau and the Prime Minister release video celebrating the national holiday

Undercover operation exposes prominent human trafficking problem in Greater Victoria

VicPD’s Operation No More took place in mid-June at a local hotel

Tsilhqot’in Nation demands meeting with feds on declining Fraser River chinook stocks

The Nation wants to partner with DFO to rebuild and recover the stocks

Gov. General honours Canadians for bravery, volunteer service

Five categories of winners presented on Canada Day

COVID-19: Should non-medical masks be mandatory in Canada?

New poll shows Canadians are divided on the rules around mandatory masks

‘A little bit scary for everybody’: Air passengers wary as new rules take effect

Masks or face coverings have been mandatory on flights since April 20

Library’s Summer Reading Club goes virtual

This literacy program is usually offered in person

VIDEO: Prince William and Kate chat with B.C. hospital staff about COVID-19

Seven-minute video posted to Youtube on Canada Day

Most Read