Friday, October 31, 2014

Metro Vancouver Completes Overpass Project

By Mark Edward Nero

Port Metro Vancouver on Oct. 24 celebrated the completion of the new Roberts Bank Causeway Overpass, a major infrastructure project that is expected to improve container handling capacity at Canada’s largest container terminal.

The project is expected to improve the efficiency of the Roberts Bank Rail Corridor, which serves the Deltaport Container Terminal in Delta, British Columbia. Deltaport handles 50 percent of the containerized cargo that moves through Canada’s West Coast.

The overpass, which is also expected to increase rail capacity and enhance the safety and fluidity of traffic to and from the terminal, involved the construction of a two-lane overpass to provide grade separation between rail tracks and the Roberts Bank Causeway access road adjacent to the terminal.

The separation of road and rail traffic will improve safety for transportation operators involved in the movement of goods for international trade, according to the port, and also significantly improve the fluidity of inbound and outbound containers, plus contribute to additional capacity at the terminal, roughly 150,000 to 200,000 new 20-foot equivalent units annually.

The overpass project, which began construction in early 2013, is an element of the Deltaport Terminal Road and Rail Improvement Project, a plan developed by the port to reduce delays and inefficiencies in rail and truck operations and to increase cargo-handling capacity at Deltaport.

“The Deltaport Terminal, Road and Rail Improvement Project at Roberts Bank is increasing the efficiency of the Deltaport terminal so that it can better handle growing demand for container trade to and from Asia,” Port Metro Vancouver President & CEO Robin Silvester explained. “This portion of the project is eliminating delays and congestion for truckers and increasing rail capacity by providing a roadway over rail lines on the Roberts Bank causeway.”

The total cost of the project was $44.7 million: Port Metro Vancouver contributed $24.8 million, while the federal government pitched in $19.9 million.