The Vancouver Fraser Port Authority (the port authority), in collaboration with the City of Pitt Meadows and Canadian Pacific (CP), is leading the Pitt Meadows Road and Rail Improvements Project that aims to eliminate the existing rail crossings at Harris Road and Kennedy Road.
The City is:
- Working closely with the port authority and CP to ensure the Harris Road underpass meet the needs of the community—including improved public safety, reduced congestion, more reliable commutes, and better emergency response times.
- Working with project partners to implement feasible noise and vibration mitigation options, long-term effects on traffic and changes to the character of the community, and quality of life for all who live and work in Pitt Meadows.
- Working with the Pitt Meadows Heritage and Museum Society to find a new location for the Hoffmann & Son Machine Shop and the General Store.
Acoustical Peer Review of Road and Rail Noise and Vibration Study
On May 18, 2021, Council approved a budget of $75,000 to conduct an independent Peer Review of the port authority’s noise and vibration study results and technical report for the project and collect and analyze additional data along the rail corridor in relation to existing operations and associated noise and vibration exceedances.
Enviornmental Study of CP Rail Operations
On December 8, 2020, Council directed staff to commission an enviornmental study of CP Rail’s existing and proposed expansion of operations in Pitt Meadows, including the Pitt Meadows Road and Rail Improvments Project. An update on the environmental study was provided to Council on April 13, 2021.
- Watch the December 8, 2020 Council Meeting.
- Watch the March 26, 2021 Council Meeting.
- Read the March 26, 2021 Staff Report.
Fall 2021 Engagement - Harris Road Underpass
During the next round of public engagement in the fall, the port authority project team will share with the community the updated design for the Harris Road underpass and information about the relocation of the heritage buildings in collaboration with the City.
For more information and to sign up for the port authority’s project newsletter, visit portvancouver.com/pittmeadowsengagement.
Pitt Meadows is home to two of the busiest rail crossings in the Lower Mainland. Currently, these two rail crossings are blocked for an average of 3.5 hours and 1.75 hours each day due to trains.
The goal of this project is to:
- Mitigate impacts of growing rail and port trade traffic on the Pitt Meadows community
- Improve safety and access in the community with better traffic flow and emergency response options
The project includes:
- A new four-lane underpass below the CP main rail crossing at Harris Road
- A new two-lane overpass on Kennedy Road over the main rail line entrance to CP’s Vancouver Intermodal Facility*
*Note: Work on the Kennedy Road overpass has been paused with priority being given to the Harris Road underpass. Read the full media release.
CP is leading the following rail components:
- A new siding track on the north side of the existing tracks between Harris Road and Kennedy Road
- An extension of the existing lead track accessing the Vancouver Intermodal Facility east across Harris Road
The City’s Role
The City of Pitt Meadows is collaborating with the port authority and CP to ensure this project meets the needs of our community.
The City’s role includes:
- Working with the port authority on technical aspects of the Harris Road underpass and related public space options
- Working with the Pitt Meadows Heritage and Museum Society to find a new location for the Hoffmann & Son Machine Shop and the General Store to align with the City’s longer-term vision
- Maintaining the public-serving portions of the Harris Road underpass (not the structure supporting the rail*) when complete.
*CP would own and maintain the structure supporting the rail tracks.
This project is part of the Greater Vancouver Gateway 2030 and is funded by the Government of Canada through the National Trade Corridors Fund, the port authority, and CP.
The City is not funding capital costs associated with the project.
History of the Harris Road Underpass
The Harris Road crossing has been a concern among residents and discussed by City staff and councils since the 1970s. It was also considered in the City of Pitt Meadows’ most recent Transportation Management Plan in 2014, but wasn’t feasible due to cost.
Now with funding available from the Government of Canada, the port authority, and CP, separating the rail crossings will improve safety by reducing the risk of collisions between trains and road users, improve community access and connections, and improve traffic flow and emergency response options. The project will also provide opportunities for public space improvements and walking and cycling connections.
If approved by Council, the Pitt Meadows Road and Rail Improvements Project will eliminate the at-grade crossing at Harris Road with a new four-lane underpass and a shared multi-use path to accommodate various modes of active transportation.
This infographic provides an overall at-a-glace visual timeline of the history and evolution of road and rail discussions for the City of Pitt Meadows, spanning from the 1970s until 2021 including key topics, meetings, and engagement opportunities.