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New West to begin work for new Bailey bridge Monday

Michael Olshaski Sr. and Jr., 23 months, check out the Braid Street Bailey bridge and the Brunette River on their Cruzin
Michael Olshaski Sr. and Jr., 23 months, check out the Braid Street Bailey bridge and the Brunette River on their Cruzin' Cooler while they can. The bridge has been shut down to vehicle traffic due to structural issues. A replacement is to be installed this month.
— image credit: Grant Granger/NewsLeader

Replacement of the Brunette River Bailey bridge will begin Monday.

The one-lane bridge has been closed to vehicular traffic since March after structural testing showed it needed to be replaced. It has remained open to cyclists and pedestrians but will be closed to all traffic starting Monday. It is expected to remain closed until July 23.

The new bridge is being pieced together from components found locally and shipped from the Ontario-based manufacturer.

According to the city, the replacement and its installation will cost New Westminster $175,000. It had hoped the province would provide a bridge for free, but Transportation Minister Todd Stone told New West it would do so only if the city was willing to have another one installed beside it to create two lanes for traffic.

The city declined that offer maintaining it would add traffic to New Westminster's already congested streets, especially around the Braid Street and Brunette Avenue intersection.

The bridge connects New West to Coquitlam, which wants two lanes. An arbitrator is due to make a binding ruling on the dispute between the two cities in July.

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