IAN M. SHERWIN ON PRESERVING OLD TOWN’S JOHNSON STREET BRIDGE: ‘Far better to recycle the present bridge at half the cost to the Victoria taxpayer’



Panic is rarely a sound reason to rush to spend a huge amount of taxpayers’ money.

There is a good driving bottom on the west side of the Blue Bridge, where for very little money, a new line of piles with a well strapped capping would prevent damage from any failure of the western lip, which seems to be the main focus of panic.

No matter what new structure is built, it will still be no guarantee of protection against the Big One, which will be a major geological event along a 1,000-kilometre rupture.

The proposed bridge panic scheme is wrong for all these reasons:

As long ago as 1965, traffic studies confirmed that Bay Street and its bridge was the ideal future east-west distributor of automobile and heavy-truck traffic.

It requires no lift bridge and can be easily doubled without blocking traffic for a year or more.

A small pedestrian and cyclist bridge could at that time once again be introduced over Rock Bay connecting with Store Street and providing an attractive near-harbour north-south pedestrian and cyclist route which is now sadly lacking.

Planning to dump an increased flow of automobiles for 100 years into the Old Town flies in the face of all the work of Old Town preservation of the last years.

Far better to recycle the present bridge at half the cost to the Victoria taxpayer.

Within 30 years, “dollar-wise” sensitive commercial development pressure will convert Wharf and Store Street into plazas for pedestrians and golf-course vehicles as Victoria continues its increasingly rapid transformation into a superb retirement area.

Anyone who thinks this is futuristic hasn’t live here and seen the changes for over 80 years.

Ian W. Sherwin



CCC BLOG reprint:

Victoria Times Colonist: timescolonist.com

Don’t panic to spend money on a new bridge

Sunday, December 27, 2009

Page D3




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