Iron Workers Memorial (Second Narrows) Bridge

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In 1992, the Cassiar Connector was constructed and the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge was modestly refurbished (lighting changed, median installed and barriers/railings installed between the traffic and the sidewalks, narrowing the sidewalks but making it less heart-stoppingly perilous to ride in a stiff crosswind). At the time, cycling advocates asked for wider sidewalks and better access to the bridge. The result was somewhat better access on the north side of the bridge and the situation we have now on the south side.
 
In 1992, the Cassiar Connector was constructed and the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge was modestly refurbished (lighting changed, median installed and barriers/railings installed between the traffic and the sidewalks, narrowing the sidewalks but making it less heart-stoppingly perilous to ride in a stiff crosswind). At the time, cycling advocates asked for wider sidewalks and better access to the bridge. The result was somewhat better access on the north side of the bridge and the situation we have now on the south side.
  
As part of the consultation for the Gateway Program (introduced in 2006), advocates asked the province to upgrade cycling and pedestrian access on the south side by, among other things, providing a connection between the east and west sidewalks.  This could be either under the bridge (as at the south end of Lion’s Gate) or over the highway, connecting to the elevated sidewalk/bike path on the east side and therefore needing a ramp structure only on the west side.  This request was deemed “beyond the scope of the project”, which apparently ends just short of the bridge head.
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As part of the consultation for the Gateway Program (introduced in 2006), advocates asked the province to upgrade cycling and pedestrian access on the south side by, among other things, providing a connection between the east and west sidewalks.  This could be either under the bridge (as at the south end of Lion’s Gate) or over the highway, connecting to the elevated sidewalk/bike path on the east side and therefore needing a ramp structure only on the west side.  This request was deemed “beyond the scope of the project”, which ended just short of the bridge head.
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In 2015, the sidewalks on the bridge were widened and higher fencing installed, along with minor adjustments to the Dollarton off-ramp crossing at the northeast end. Although the sidewalks were widened to 2.5 m from 1.2 m, the resulting clear width does not meet guidelines for bi-directional use. Pedestrians may use either sidewalk, however, cyclists are directed to use the east sidewalk to travel northbound and the west sidewalk to travel southbound. Some signage has been installed to deter wrong way movements, however, there is some remaining "yield to oncoming cyclists" signage remaining and additional positive guidance required on both approaches.
  
 
=== Action ===
 
=== Action ===
  
On October 25 2010 a joint committee was formed between the North Shore, Vancouver and Burnaby committees to formulate a plan for moving forward. All VACC members are welcome to attend the monthly meetings - bring your feedback and opinions and help represent the IWMB riders community.
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On October 25 2010 a joint committee was formed between the North Shore, Vancouver and Burnaby committees to formulate a plan for moving forward. All VACC (now HUB) members were welcome to attend the monthly meetings.
  
 
* MEETING MINUTES
 
* MEETING MINUTES
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[[Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes 07 Nov 2011.pdf]]
 
[[Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes 07 Nov 2011.pdf]]
  
=== Bridge lane safety hazards ===
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In August of 2019, in response to complaints regarding sidewalk use and wayfinding, the Ministry's Operations Manager reiterated that in order for a lane or path to be used in both directions by cyclists, the minimum width must be three metres, which is why they installed signs showing the preferred direction of travel across the bridge for cyclists (i.e. northbound east side, southbound west side).
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They acknowledged correspondence from cyclists using the bridge, complaining about the links on both ends of the structure, some of which belong to the Ministry and some to municipalities.  The complaints include the additional riding they must do when heading home to East Vancouver and Burnaby if they take the southbound west side sidewalk. Often these riders will take the east sidewalk, for the convenience of the connection to road network on the southeast corner of the bridge.
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As it has been a few years since the signs were last reviewed, District staff are reviewing the current signs and their locations.  They will then ask their Traffic Operations engineering group to review the signing on the bridge sidewalks, to determine if they need to be updated or changed to different signs or any new signs need to be added.  These may include possible speed limits on the sidewalks of the bridge, "Bell or Yell when overtaking" signs, one way signs if deemed appropriate, or other alternatives.
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The Ministry is currently designing the Main/Dollarton interchange as part of the Lower Lynn interchanges project.  The cycling connections will be changing as the project is constructed.  There will also be including way-finding signs as part of the design and the Project Manager will be reviewing the examples provided by HUB North Shore as part of their review.
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[[File:IWMB pedestrian handrail.jpg|thumb|200px|right|Pedestrian handrail]]
 
[[File:IWMB pedestrian handrail.jpg|thumb|200px|right|Pedestrian handrail]]
 
[[File:DSC02879.JPG|thumb|200px|right|Concrete support post at entry point]]
 
[[File:DSC02879.JPG|thumb|200px|right|Concrete support post at entry point]]
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[[File:DSC02912.JPG|thumb|200px|right|Expansion gap cover]]
 
[[File:DSC02912.JPG|thumb|200px|right|Expansion gap cover]]
  
Photos at right show the old bridge sidewalks prior to the widening project.
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=== Old Bridge Sidewalks ===
 
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Photos at the bottom right show the old bridge sidewalks prior to the sidewalk widening project that was completed in 2015.
=== Skeena & Bridgeway Tunnels ===
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[[File:Skeena tunnel from north end.JPG|thumb|200px|right|Skeena tunnel from north end]]
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[[File:Bridgeway St tunnel from north end.JPG|thumb|200px|right|Bridgeway tunnel from north end]]
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* These tunnels both provide crossings of the highway in close proximity. Skeena tunnel crosses the entire TCH just south of the IWMB providing cyclists with a means to access either side of the bridge. Bridgeway tunnel crosses under the McGill on/off ramps providing cyclists with a means to ride to and from the Portside bicycle route and E Hastings Street for points east, south or west. The Bridgeway tunnel is a great example of a cyling facility which is rider friendly.
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* Consider removal of the current elevated shared pathway in the Skeena tunnel with replacement at grade alongside traffic as per Bridgeway tunnel example. This may require widening of the tunnel and may significantly alter the perception of the tunnel for cyclists.
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* Which party is responsible for the Skeena and Bridgeway tunnels? MOTI is responsible for the structure which supports the highway and COV is responsible for the roadway and pathways.
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=== Ongoing rider survey and suggestions ===
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Details of the issues and improvements suggested to date are available on [[Iron Workers Memorial (Second Narrows) Bridge ongoing survey|this page]].
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Latest revision as of 11:11, 7 August 2019

North End
South End
Existing sidewalk is cantilevered off main structure
Middle Span - Train Lift Bridge in Distance
Middle Span - Temporary Maintenance deck - hung underneath the bridge deck

[edit] Background

In 1992, the Cassiar Connector was constructed and the Ironworkers Memorial Bridge was modestly refurbished (lighting changed, median installed and barriers/railings installed between the traffic and the sidewalks, narrowing the sidewalks but making it less heart-stoppingly perilous to ride in a stiff crosswind). At the time, cycling advocates asked for wider sidewalks and better access to the bridge. The result was somewhat better access on the north side of the bridge and the situation we have now on the south side.

As part of the consultation for the Gateway Program (introduced in 2006), advocates asked the province to upgrade cycling and pedestrian access on the south side by, among other things, providing a connection between the east and west sidewalks. This could be either under the bridge (as at the south end of Lion’s Gate) or over the highway, connecting to the elevated sidewalk/bike path on the east side and therefore needing a ramp structure only on the west side. This request was deemed “beyond the scope of the project”, which ended just short of the bridge head.

In 2015, the sidewalks on the bridge were widened and higher fencing installed, along with minor adjustments to the Dollarton off-ramp crossing at the northeast end. Although the sidewalks were widened to 2.5 m from 1.2 m, the resulting clear width does not meet guidelines for bi-directional use. Pedestrians may use either sidewalk, however, cyclists are directed to use the east sidewalk to travel northbound and the west sidewalk to travel southbound. Some signage has been installed to deter wrong way movements, however, there is some remaining "yield to oncoming cyclists" signage remaining and additional positive guidance required on both approaches.

[edit] Action

On October 25 2010 a joint committee was formed between the North Shore, Vancouver and Burnaby committees to formulate a plan for moving forward. All VACC (now HUB) members were welcome to attend the monthly meetings.

  • MEETING MINUTES

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes Oct 25 2010.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes Nov 22 2010.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes Jan 24 2011.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes Feb 28 2011.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes Mar 28 2011.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes 09 May 2011.pdf

Media:IWMB minutes May 30 2011.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes 27 June 2011.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes 08 Aug 2011.pdf

Media:Second Narrows Bridge Minutes Oct 3 2011.pdf

Media:2nd Narrows Bridge Minutes 07 Nov 2011.pdf

In August of 2019, in response to complaints regarding sidewalk use and wayfinding, the Ministry's Operations Manager reiterated that in order for a lane or path to be used in both directions by cyclists, the minimum width must be three metres, which is why they installed signs showing the preferred direction of travel across the bridge for cyclists (i.e. northbound east side, southbound west side).

They acknowledged correspondence from cyclists using the bridge, complaining about the links on both ends of the structure, some of which belong to the Ministry and some to municipalities. The complaints include the additional riding they must do when heading home to East Vancouver and Burnaby if they take the southbound west side sidewalk. Often these riders will take the east sidewalk, for the convenience of the connection to road network on the southeast corner of the bridge.

As it has been a few years since the signs were last reviewed, District staff are reviewing the current signs and their locations. They will then ask their Traffic Operations engineering group to review the signing on the bridge sidewalks, to determine if they need to be updated or changed to different signs or any new signs need to be added. These may include possible speed limits on the sidewalks of the bridge, "Bell or Yell when overtaking" signs, one way signs if deemed appropriate, or other alternatives.

The Ministry is currently designing the Main/Dollarton interchange as part of the Lower Lynn interchanges project. The cycling connections will be changing as the project is constructed. There will also be including way-finding signs as part of the design and the Project Manager will be reviewing the examples provided by HUB North Shore as part of their review.

Pedestrian handrail
Concrete support post at entry point
Concrete support posts
Expansion gap cover

[edit] Old Bridge Sidewalks

Photos at the bottom right show the old bridge sidewalks prior to the sidewalk widening project that was completed in 2015.

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