Quesnel Mayor Bob Simpson will be talking to the Premier on Wednesday (Sept 16) and one of the topics will be the North-South Interconnector.

The issue was raised at Tuesday night’s City Council meeting.

Mayor Simpson talked about some of the next steps, now that the preliminary design has been accepted by the province…

“I am hopeful convince the province to release the funding necessary to do the next stage and then start walking it as a project for particularly federal funding.    There are envelopes there for federal funding for these kinds of projects, and if the province signs off on it then we can all get together and do that.”

Simpson says they want to ramp up public support and pressure for the new route to get shovels in the ground as fast as possible.

The new route includes two new structures to replace the Quesnel River Bridge and the Quesnel Rail Crossing Bridge.

The design also features a new 3.7 kilometre section of Highway 97 from North Star Road to River Park Road.

Simpson says it checks all of the boxes when it comes to what is needed…

“Not only do we have a route that our business community agrees to, that our industry partners agree to, that meets our needs to make sure we do not inherit two bridges that we cannot afford while getting those bridges replaced, that meets our needs to take not only the through traffic going through Quesnel off our highway, particularly the large transport vehicles that are getting larger, and the need to not have a situation like we had this summer where there was a four kilometer backup on both sides of the Quesnel River Bridge when somebody bumped the guardrails on the south side of the bridge.”

Simpson says the other piece that it meets is the need for easy access into town where they are building the attractions to draw people into town and get us Front and Carson as community streets that we can then develop.