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Changes to the Burrard Bridge are about much more than bike lanes. This is much more than a Vancouver project.  This is state-of-the-art design for a new age of transportation infrastructure in which Vancouver is already a pioneer.
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Adding separate bike lanes in addition to sidewalks on both sides within the existing width of the bridge would have been a significant achievement on its own.
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But in addition, the years-long project has replaced major sewerage and water infrastructure, repaired and seismically upgraded the structure, addressed the heritage of a deco masterpiece while adding new fencing, replaced the balustrades, incorporated classy pedestrian lighting, and done it all while keeping the traffic moving.
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All that, however, is not what makes this project of international interest.  Even cities like Copenhagen, New York and Montreal will be looking to see how the city has designed the traffic flows  – accommodating all kinds of active modes while making driving safer and smoother.
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At least, that’s the idea.  This is such a complex design that we won’t know for sure until the project is complete, all the feeder roads and paths are incorporated and the signals are functioning (and tweeked).  That should be happening in the next few weeks.
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The paving is near complete, the striping is underway, the landscaping is being added, the fences will be down soon, and Burrard Bridge will have its status as a landmark even more enhanced.
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Price Tags will be posting on all this in the coming weeks.
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