One hour to drive 12 kilometres. That’s now the average commute time from Langford to Victoria. Unacceptable.
The Capital Regional District growth strategy shows West Shore populations increasing by 85 per cent in Colwood, 90 per cent in Sooke and 35 per cent in Langford by the year 2038.
However, Langford has already approved developments that would add 10 per cent to its population in the next few years. Colwood has also approved multi-family development and ironically plans to remove the only park-and-ride lot on Sooke Road. Both communities will add hundreds more cars onto local roads daily.
So what’s being done to address gridlock? Not much. The new McKenzie Interchange will provide some relief. View Royal has a quaint two-lane highway that is completely inadequate.
The CRD’s Regional Transportation Plan identifies the key reason why little has been done to address this key issue: “With the exception of regional multi-use trails, the CRD does not operate or maintain transportation infrastructure.”
There’s no simple solution. But with some co-operation, the Old Island Highway could be upgraded to three lanes, with the centre lane alternating during rush hours and one lane prioritized for buses and car-pool vehicles. Craigflower Road could be upgraded to four lanes between Admirals and Tillicum.
The key is co-operation. If local governments will not address this important economic issue, then the provincial government has a duty to act and clear the political gridlock for local residents and taxpayers.
this important issue.