The 90-year-old single-lane Timber Bridge at Roche Cove near Sooke will soon be replaced, with construction on a new Gillespie Road span starting next week.
The province announced crews will begin building a new two-lane concrete bridge which will include 1.5-metre paved shoulders for pedestrians and cyclists.
The existing Roche Cove bridge was built in 1928, but B.C. premier John Horgan said in a statement a new bridge has been a long time coming since drivers have been frustrated with waits to take turns to cross the span.
The province awarded North Gate Pacific Contracting of Maple Ridge a $3.66 million contract to do the work, with the new bridge expected to open in the fall.
The province says Gillespie Road is an important alternate route to Highway 14 during closures and constructing a wider bridge will make traffic safer for people travelling to and from Sooke.
Drivers are asked to obey traffic control personnel during the project and to expect delays of up to 20 minutes between 9 a.m. and 3 p.m. Mondays through Saturdays for rock blasting.
There will be some full-day closures during the project, with detours available via Kangaroo Road and East Sooke Road, which will be advertised in advance with message signs.
The overall cost of the replacement project is estimated to be $4.3 million and is part of the NDP government’s Highway 14 corridor improvements.