There likely will be a few irate motorists who realize they missed an exit and are forced to drive though the Massey Tunnel into Richmond.
This week, the Highway 17/River Road exit (Exit 28) off Highway 99 northbound was relocated due to construction for the South Fraser Perimeter Road.
It's the first of what will be several major traffic pattern changes to occur for the new highway, which is scheduled for completion by the end of this year.
Delta’s municipal engineering director Steven Lan said Exit 28 will be closed at its current location near the tunnel and will be relocated about two kilometres further south at a new interchange.
Drivers heading north on Highway 99 that want to go to Ladner, Tsawwassen, the ferry terminal or River Road eastbound will have to take the new exit, which will take them to a new service road running parallel to Highway 99. The road will lead them to the intersection by the Delta Town & Country Inn.
Northbound HOV traffic heading to the tunnel can also take Exit 28.
Lan noted the advantage of the relocated exit and new side road is that drivers not wanting to go through the tunnel won't be stuck in the usual rush hour traffic jam. Signage will be in place notifying drivers of the relocation, but Lan noted if anybody misses it, they'd have no choice but to drive into Richmond.
He added it will take some time for drivers to get used to this and other upcoming traffic pattern changes.
One of the biggest changes will see traffic coming off the ferries in Tsawwassen funneled onto SFPR, which is now officially called Highway 17. Those wanting to get into Ladner or Tsawwassen from the ferries have to take a separate exit to what most people still call Highway 17, but now has the new name of Highway 17A.
Delta council agreed this week on the need for plenty of signage by the province to help motorists navigate all the changes.
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