City coordinates expanded road work and street use this summer

April 5, 2018 | News

With summer just around the corner, the City is preparing for Vancouver streets to play host to activities such as City-led infrastructure upgrades, third-party utility work, private development, filming, and special events.

“A key role of the City is to ensure that infrastructure such as streets, sewers, and water mains is kept in good condition so that we have a healthy and functioning city,” says Jerry Dobrovolny, General Manager of Engineering Services. “Summer is a busy time for construction, as long days and good weather enable work to progress relatively quickly. It’s also a time when residents want to be outside, enjoying the city, and we work to accommodate special events that use our streets during this time as well.”

This year, the City will upgrade about 15 km of street network, 8 km of water mains, and 5 km of sewer mains. Although the number of projects is comparable to last year, the impact of them will be felt less as there are fewer major arterial routes impacted.

Major City Projects:

  • Fraser Street Upgrades: coordinated water, sewer, and street upgrades;
  • Smithe Street Upgrades: coordinated water, sewer, and street upgrades;
  • Quebec St & 1st Ave: Street Improvements: upgrades to repair the street and improve comfort and safety for people walking and cycling;
  • St. Catherines Sewer Trunk Upgrades: sewer separation underway along sections of E 39th Avenue, E 40th Avenue, Prince Albert Street, and St. Catherines Street, coordinated with safety improvements for people walking along routes to Sir Alexander Mackenzie School.
  • 10th Ave – Health Precinct Safety Improvements: work underway from Oak to Willow Street to improve patient access, enhance pedestrian safety, and support critical hospital functions;
  • 10th Ave - Water & Street Repairs: routine water and street upgrades begin in May with a full closure from MacDonald to Alma Street to accommodate work.

Other Significant Summer Construction:

In addition to coordinating the activities of our own crews, the City also coordinates the activities of third-parties to develop traffic management plans and limit impacts on residents, businesses, and road users.

  • FortisBC Gas Line Upgrade: One lane each direction along E 1st Avenue beginning late April from Nanaimo to Boundary Road and full closure of E 1st Avenue from Clark Drive to Nanaimo Street from late June to late August.
  • Oakridge Centre Area Improvements: Utility and street upgrades adjacent to Oakridge Centre to support future growth around the Cambie Corridor.

Congestion Management Strategy:

Last year (2017), Vancouver became one of the few cities in North America to adopt a comprehensive congestion management strategy. As part of this strategy, and to minimize anticipated impacts of the 1st Avenue closure this summer, the City is updating the Rush Hour and Bus Lane regulations along Broadway and Hastings Street:

  • Extend AM rush regulations by 30 minutes (7-10am)
  • Extend PM rush regulations by 1 hour (3-7pm)

Changes will be implemented this spring and are expected to be complete by July.

The City also expects to update rush regulations along Georgia Street downtown later this year. Additional arterial routes will also be reviewed as part of the strategy with changes implemented where appropriate.

Upcoming Special Events:

  • Vaisakhi Parade – April 14
  • Earth Day Parade – April 21
  • Vancouver Sun Run – April 22
  • BMO Half Marathon – May 6
  • Italian Day – June 10
  • Car Free Days - June 16/17, July 8
  • Greek Day – June 24
  • Scotiabank Half Marathon – June 24
  • Canada Day Celebrations & Parade – July 1
  • Khatsahlano Street Party – July 7
  • Celebration of Light - July 28, Aug 1, 4
  • Pride Parade – Aug 5
  • Our City Ride – Aug 18

The City encourages residents to enjoy the variety of events throughout Vancouver this summer, and extends its thanks for everyone’s understanding and patience during the busy summer season of expanded street use.
For information about impacts from filming or special events, listen to your local radio station for updates on traffic impacts, check the VanConnect app, or visit to plan your route before you go.