WATCH: Drivers are being advised to plan for longer travel times on the Malahat this summer due to ongoing upgrades. Isabelle Raghem reports.
If you’ve been caught in one of those long construction delays on the Malahat highway recently – brace yourself for more to come.
Warm weather, long weekends and ongoing construction brings higher traffic volumes on the corridor.
It’s part of a $34-million dollar project to make upgrades from Aspen Rd. to Shawnigan Lake Rd., and means the northbound road is down to one lane.
The Moon Water Lodge stands right off the stretch already saw significant slow downs on the Victoria day long weekend.
“We definitely saw a difference but expected it’s a long weekend,” says Manager Alicia Nikkelsen, “but going down from two lanes to one of course it’s going to be that much more”
But the Manager says the longer commute isn’t necessarily bad for business.
“You know people sitting in traffic a little longer maybe they decide to stop in to use the washroom or grab a bite to eat on their way up. Or some people might end up loving it and end up spending the night.”
Drive BC says delays will add about 20-minutes to the commute and possibly more on Friday and Sunday afternoons.
“We certainly hear folks who are stuck in that and they’re curious sort of why that’s in place,” says Janelle Erwin, the Deputy Regional Director for the Ministry of Transportation, “it’s there because we need the space to get it done. At the end of the day, it’s a short term pain for very long term gain.”
The project will continue throughout the summer until 2018.
Click here to find more on the improvement project here.