Sunbury Neighbourhood Association

Deception & Misrepresentation - June 26, 07

From: Don & Shannon Hunt []
: Tuesday, June 26, 2007 2:56 PM
Subject: Deception and misrepresentation

Dear Mayor and Council,

 I am writing to inform you about a seemingly deliberate deception of the people of Delta with regards to the plans for the SFPR and its impacts on North Delta.

 For many, many years the local residents have made it clear that the truck traffic on River Road is unacceptable. The route was not designed for heavy truck traffic and causes an excessive amount of diesel pollution in our homes and schools.

 At the Gateway Open Houses and community meetings, it was made clear by the people of Sunbury/Annieville that they did not want truck traffic to be able to utilize River Road if and when the SFPR was to be built, and further, did not want the ‘rat racers’ from other communities to be able to cut through our neighbourhoods.  At first, Gateway seemed to understand this concern and originally designed to have River Road blocked off at both ends (at Center St. and at 92nd), leaving 90th Avenue, 92ndAvenue, Shepherd Way and Brooke Rd as the only access routes in and out of our area.

 Then there was talk of continuing River Rd. through to old River Rd and Miller Rd in Surrey which most people felt might be acceptable because it could be used by local residents and would be of no use to trucks and through traffic.  However, this would only be acceptable if it did not impact our heritage properties.

 Gateway then told us that a single restricted lane could be added at the Center Street end so that transit and Emergency vehicles could get through to Nordel Way.  This too was acceptable to residents as long as it was clearly not possible for ‘rat runners’ to get through as well.

 That was the information residents received at the Gateway Open Houses after the release of the Environmental Application Documents, and upon which the public and the working groups were asked to make comment.  Now, we find there have been further changes.  River Road at Center Street would become a two-lane viaduct that Gateway says is for transit, emergency vehicles and cyclists, but “may be opened up to commuter traffic should the need arise in the future.”

 Buses, cyclists and emergency vehicles do not need a two lane overpass.

 This would create a 6 lane viaduct over the BNSF tracks in Sunbury.  Gateway documents show that noise and air pollution from 4 lanes would already be at unacceptable health risk levels, without taking into consideration the elevation of the structure. The fact that it is a raised span will allow the pollutants to travel much farther. The addition of two more lanes would increase the pollution by another 50%.

 At the east end, the new Gateway plan is to connect River Road to the Elevator Road overpass at Annieville. This unacceptable design would allow heavy trucks from Fraser Surrey Docks to use River Road through Sunbury/Annieville to access Nordel Way and Hwy 91!

Truckers are not going to go all the way down Grace Road in the wrong direction, to Scott Road, continue further east to Tannery Road, and then north to get on to the New SFPR to go west, when they can drive along River Road to get to the same place at half the distance. This will be especially true when the new SFPR backs up every day at the dangerously designed ‘S’ curve at the Nordel interchange, and all traffic will try to get around the congestion. Translink and the Ministry of Highways will open up River Road to through traffic and simply say that ‘the need has arisen’.

 As well, these changes were not made public despite repeated attempts by the Sunbury Neighbourhood Association to find out the specifics of these two locations.

The structure for the River Rd overpass at Center Street was surreptitiously listed on Table 4.4, pg 100, of the Main Binder in the Gateway Application without any corresponding text, and several queries that we made about the listed structure went unanswered by Gateway and was only partially confirmed recently by Delta’s Ian Radnidge.

 The fact that the structure was listed in Gateway documents that were printed in September of 2006, but not ever mentioned in text, or at the public meetings, or when specific and direct questions asked were asked about it, suggests that the intention was to build it that way from the beginning despite public concerns and that there was a deliberate attempt to mislead.

 North Delta residents will not accept a design that will allow commuter traffic and container trucks to impact our community from three major roadways through our neighbourhood.

We are expecting you to support us in protecting our neighbourhood by again saying no to the Gateway plans for North Delta, and insisting that if the project were to be built, that there be no ability for ‘through traffic’ to use River Road in North Delta.


 Don Hunt

Sunbury Neighbourhood Association


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