Douglas Massey, the son of George Massey the MLA that championed the design and development of the Massey Tunnel which opened in 1959 has weighed in to the Delta Optimist about the proposed Massey Bridge replacement. Massey responds to comments that the tunnel is not ecologically prudent, warranting its removal.

“The George Massey Tunnel was built below the riverbed and does not interfere in the migration of salmon or other fish species, nor does it interfere in the flight path of birds. Should we not be more concerned about the environmental effects of a high level bridge, hundreds of feet in the air, combined with the new overhead high voltage transmission lines (that presently go under the river bed in the tunnel)? Would this not result in more bird kill?

Or with the proposal to remove the George Massey Tunnel and to dredge the riverbed deeper to make the Fraser Surrey Docks a viable operation at taxpayers’ expense? What effect will this increased depth have on migrating salmon or sturgeon who live in the riverbed? What effect would the increased number of ships navigating the river and the increased industrialization have on the foreshores and existing dikes and the habitat on the wetland marshes and would recreational kayaking still be viable?”

While Douglas Massey advocates for the right fit for the environment, another letter writer to the Optimist worries about the tolled bridge as being expensive for lower wage workers, and wonders if the tunnel could continue in operation as an HOV/transit-dedicated route “for those of us who are required to travel to Vancouver every day”.

 If only.