Construction in Sidney along Beacon Avenue West will cause delays, municipality warns

Disruptions and delays occur in one of the busiest traffic areas on the Saanich Peninsula.

Sidney city officials are urging residents to seek alternatives for travel along Beacon Avenue West and Galaran Road due to construction along these roads starting September 6 and continuing through the end of October.

York Reality – which is currently building Amazon’s new facility – will install storm sewers and build sidewalks as part of road improvements along Beacon Avenue West and Galaran Road. “Best to take an alternate route if possible during this time,” read one social media post. According to the municipality, York Realty will ensure that traffic signs and flaggers are in place to minimize traffic disruptions.

The area is one of the busiest traffic areas in Sidney. According to the Beacon Avenue West study, the section of Beacon Avenue West from Galaran Road to Stirling Way (almost identical to the affected area shown by the municipality on a map) recorded an average annual daily traffic (AADT) of 10,957 during a three day period. count in September 2020 as part of a study. The section of Galaran Road from Jahn Place to Skylark Lane is also busy, having recorded an AADT of 2,686. (This report studied a total of six intersections in the area and notes that Beacon and Galaran Road are underrated).

Administrative manager Randy Humble later said the works would include a temporary closure of Galaran Road south of Jahn Place for a few days during the construction project. “There will be a small traffic detour in place for these few days, directing residents to Henry Avenue West,” he said. “Drivers may want to take an alternate route to avoid construction if an alternate route is practical.”

Alternative routes, however, seem limited. Residents of Galaran Road and other smaller residential roads can avoid West Beacon Avenue by going through Mills Road and Henry Avenue, provided they are prepared to access Mills Road from West Saanich Road on the other side of the peninsula with West Saanich Road accessible from Willingdon Road – the main access road to Victoria International Airport – or Lands Ends Road near the Swartz Bay ferry terminal.

The affected area is also home to children attending Sydney Primary School. During the school year, children walk regularly on West Beacon Avenue along a designated trail on the north side of the road before crossing Route 17 with crossing guards to help them along the way. Kids can also access a trail on the west side of Highway 17.

Humble also addressed this issue in their comments. “Safe active transportation routes in the area will remain in place, including the flight path and the bike path that runs along the west side of Pat Bay Road,” he said. “For this reason, we do not expect students who walk or cycle to Sydney Primary School to be significantly affected by the roadworks.

The affected area is also near commercial and industrial businesses in Sidney and North Saanich and it remains to be seen how the works will affect them. However, people living and working in the area have likely already adapted to building in and around the Amazon facility. Sidney, North Saanich and the Victoria Airports Authority are finalizing plans and funding for the proposed roundabout at the intersection of Galaran Road and Beacon Avenue West and the realignment of nearby Stirling Way to help improve traffic flow.


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