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Three teams move to next phase of George Massey Tunnel Replacement project

Three bid teams have been chosen by the province of British Columbia to participate in the next phase of procurement to build a replacement for the George Massey Tunnel. The $3 billion project includes construction of an immersed tunnel on the bed of the Fraser Level.

The tunnel will include a new toll-free, eight-lane tunnel, which will improve travel for people along Highway 99 between Richmond and Delta.

“We are moving ahead on delivering improvements for the thousands of people who rely on this crossing each day and for better goods movement across the region,” said Rob Fleming, Minister of Transportation and Infrastructure said in a statement. “Advancing the new tunnel will also increase trade to the United States and support a vital link to Vancouver International Airport.”

The teams invited to submit proposals for the competitive selection process to enter into a Design Early Works Agreement with the Province are, in alphabetical order:

  • “Cross Fraser Partnership”, led by the Canadian arm of French conglomerate Bouygues, plus Spanish contractor FCC, Quebec-based Pomerleau, consulting engineer Arcadis, and Dutch maritime specialist Boskalis;
  • A consortium led jointly by two South Korean companies, Daewoo and GS Engineering and Construction, with Ontario-based engineer Hatch, and Danish consulting engineer Ramboll;
  • “Fraser River Tunnel Constructors”, led by Spain’s Acciona with Aecon Construction of Canada, plus US contractor Flatiron, Dutch civil engineer Strukton Immersion Projects, and TEC Tunnel Engineering Consultants, a joint venture between Royal HaskoningDHV and Witteveen + Bos of the Netherlands.

These three teams will now create detailed plans for the 1km-long tunnel. It must be able to accommodate eight lanes for vehicles and two for pedestrians and cyclists.

The winner will also be responsible for a 350 m highway bridge for the tunnel’s southern entrance and must also demolish the existing structure, a job that is expected to take around 30 months.

Following the evaluation of submissions to the request for proposals, the province will choose the project’s design-build team. It is anticipated the team will be on board in spring 2024.

Concurrent with procurement, the Fraser River Tunnel Project continues through the Province’s environmental assessment process. The project received its readiness decision in September 2023.

The new crossing will be an eight-lane immersed tube tunnel with three general-purpose travel lanes and a dedicated transit lane in each direction. The new tunnel will also feature a separate multi-use path to support pedestrians, cyclists and other active transportation options.

The project also includes replacing the existing Deas Slough Bridge and the addition of a southbound general-purpose lane on Highway 99 between Westminster Highway and Steveston Highway in Richmond.

With the new tunnel and approaches in place, travel will flow smoothly at 80 km/h hour, unlike the current average of 30 km/h.

Construction of a new five-lane Steveston Interchange is underway and on track for completion in 2025. Cycling and transit improvements along the corridor, including an extension of bus-on-shoulder lanes south of the existing tunnel, are nearing completion.

The Fraser River Tunnel Project is being procured through a Progressive Design-Build with Target Price model. This approach allows design to progress concurrently with the environmental assessment. The estimated cost of the project is $4.15 billion.

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