5th Street Bridge Rehabilitation Project
Start: Mid April 2021
End: Fall 2021
Last Updated: June 12, 2021
Time to give our bridge some TLC.
Construction continues until October.
The 5th Street Bridge Project will preserve and extend the life of the bridge well into the future. The $6.5 million investment is being made by the City of Courtenay with support from the provincial and federal governments.
The bridge will be reduced to single lane traffic in alternating directions for six months. Expect delays and detours if you drive, walk, cycle or take transit.
Plan ahead and allow extra time for daily commutes.
Thank you for your patience.
New! Bridge Traffic Cam
5th Street Bridge Project Overview
5th Street Bridge Project E-Newsletter
To stay informed, sign-up for project updates here:
The scope for the 5th Street Rehabilitation Project includes:
- Removal of the lead‐based paint
- Recoating of all the steel including railings and rub rails
- Steel repairs to the end of the deck beams underneath the bridge
- Removal of existing overlay
- Deck concrete removal and repairs
- Placement of a new concrete overlay, including cathodic protection
- Line painting
The 60-year-old 5th Street Bridge is coated in lead paint that must be removed to address the corrosion within the steel. To protect the surrounding environment, the bridge will need to be wrapped for significant lengths of time during the project. Metal scaffolding around the bridge will be covered to prevent lead paint and other contaminants from entering the Courtenay River and surrounding area. The scaffolding required to safely complete the work will narrow the vehicle travelling lanes, reducing the available lane width and height.
The 5th Street Bridge Project prioritizes maintaining access for all modes of transportation, including people who drive, walk, cycle, and take transit.
Traffic will be reduced to one lane during construction and brief intermittent periods of full closure may be required at times.
Leaving Downtown by Vehicle
Access the 5th Street Bridge by travelling north on Cliffe Avenue, then turning right at 3rd Street to the laneway below the Native Sons Hall, to 1st Street, then right on Anderton Avenue. This detour will provide a waiting area for vehicles crossing the bridge. Consider turning left on Anderton Avenue at 1st Street to the Condensory Bridge. Eastbound vehicles will not be able to access the bridge from 5th Street.
New: Reduced Overhead Clearance
Scaffolding installation has progressed to the top of the bridge. Clearance has been reduced to 3.6 metres. All overheight vehicles MUST detour via alternate routes.
Existing lanes on the east and west sides of the bridge have been adjusted to create dedicated priority vehicle lanes. The following vehicles are permitted in the priority lanes:
- Transit and School Buses
- Emergency Services
- Fire Department (including fire department volunteers heading to the fire hall in their personal vehicles when responding to an emergency incident)
- Cyclists may also use the priority lanes and ride across the bridge deck
New: Pedestrian Corridor on the Bridge Deck
Starting the week of June 7, 2021 pedestrian access across the 5th Street Bridge will shift from the current bridge sidewalk to a dedicated pedestrian corridor on the south side of the bridge deck.
Cyclists may dismount and walk their bikes down this new pedestrian corridor or may choose to follow the detour route in the priority vehicle lane and ride across the bridge.
The pedestrian corridor will replace the previously announced temporary scaffold walkways as it has been determined this option will not be feasible due to the intricacies of the scaffold system.
Bridge Underpasses Closed
Underpasses at both ends of the 5th Street Bridge are now closed.
Park and Rides
Need a place to park your car for the day while you take transit or use another transportation method? Park your car for FREE at the following park and ride locations, then make your way to the nearest bus stop or to your destination on foot or by bike:
- 721 Grant Avenue - access off 700-block Harmston or Grant avenues
- Comox Valley Aquatic Centre - 377 Lerwick Road
These temporary Park and Rides will be in place for the duration of the project.
The 5th Street Bridge Project will result in changes to Comox Valley Regional Transit routing and schedules.
For more information, service updates and alerts in the Comox Valley Regional Transit System, please visit: bctransit.com/comox-valley
In order to remove the lead based paint and re-coat the steel structure, high pressure compressors are used. The compressors can produce a great deal of noise.
Should work be completed during evening hours, construction lighting may be used.
Construction lay-down area
The contractor will use a large area on the east (Lewis Park) side of the bridge for storage of equipment, supplies, vehicles and a construction trailer. Public parking will be reduced.
Bridges serve an important role in our communities and require thoughtful consideration when it comes to repair and investment. The City is committed to identifying all possible ways to expedite the timeline while ensuring public safety and minimizing costs.
Please note: Courtenay Recreation parking areas are for registered participants only, for use while attending recreation programs. Please help keep these parking areas accessible for patrons of these facilities.
Lewis Centre & Outdoor Memorial Pool
489 Old Island Highway
Please note there is NO LEFT TURN northbound on the Old Island Highway (toward Ryan Road) at this time due to temporary traffic pattern changes in the area.
Plan your route to access the Lewis Centre from the southbound lane. Anticipate increased traffic volumes and changes to vehicle lanes on the Old Island Highway.
The LINC Youth Centre
300 Old Island Highway
Please anticipate increased traffic volumes and changes to vehicle lanes on the Old Island Highway.
Native Sons Hall
360 Cliffe Avenue
- Upper Parking on Cliffe: Access off Cliffe Avenue at 4th Street.
- Lower Parking below Native Sons Hall: Access either off 3rd Street or 5th Street. (Please note – 5th Street Bridge traffic will also be using the 3rd Street entrance.)
Florence Filberg Centre
411 Anderton Avenue
- Upper Filberg Parking Lot: Access either off 3rd Street or 5th Street. (Please note – 5th Street Bridge traffic will also be using the 3rd Street entrance.)
- Lower Filberg Parking Lot: Use the 5th Street Bridge priority vehicle lane on Anderton Avenue along with local traffic, transit, and emergency vehicles
Bridge construction will start in mid-April 2021 and will continue for approximately six months. The timing and length of the work will be informed by seasonal weather, regulatory requirements, and minimizing impacts to the public.
The current estimate for the Fifth Street Bridge Rehabilitation project is $6.5 million.
|Outcome||A rehabilitated crossing with extended service life, with full utilization of the grant.|
|Project management, traffic optimization, and contingency||$1.1 million|
|Fed / Prov Grant||$1.96 million|
|Carry-forward from prior budget year||$0.21 million|
|City Borrowing Amount||$3.4 million|
The City of Courtenay was successful in securing a grant of $1.96 million though the New Building Canada- Small Communities fund, which requires construction completion by March 2022. The remainder of the project costs will be funded by the City of Courtenay.
As directed by Council, the City used the Alternative Approval Process to seek approval for borrowing to help fund the project.
The City of Courtenay has awarded the contract for the rehabilitation of the 5th Street Bridge to Park Derochie, an industry leader in bridge rehabilitation projects, specializing in blast cleaning, coatings, and scaffolding. Learn more
5th Street Bridge Colour Survey
Thank you to everyone who completed the 5th Street Bridge colour survey, which closed on January 13, 2021. Over 2,100 people participated in the survey, with over half of those in favour of recoating the bridge in “classic green” over the other proposed choices of silver and matte black. Council gave final approval on the colour choice at the March 1, 2021 Council meeting.
2019 Drop-in Open House and Survey
On November 21, 2019, the community was invited to provide feedback on the 5th Street Bridge Rehabilitation Project. An online survey provided additional opportunities for the community to weigh in on the project.
For more information on the 5th Street Bridge project, email firstname.lastname@example.org