Artist’s rendering of the Metral Drive complete streets project concept for the Dublin Way intersection. (City of Nanaimo image)

City of Nanaimo granted $500,000 toward Metral Drive work

Mayor says work strengthens ‘important connection’ between two hubs of the city

A centrepiece project for active transportation in Nanaimo is getting half a million dollars worth of provincial government support.

The B.C. Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure announced a slate of active transportation grants in the region, including $500,000 for the City of Nanaimo’s Metral Drive complete streets project.

According to a press release from the province, the grants are intended to support new infrastructure or improvements to existing networks, and are connected to the province’s climate goals.

The money for Metral Drive is earmarked for Phase 1 of the project, which adds continuous sidewalks, protected cycle tracks, raised intersections, curb extensions and marked crosswalks.

Mayor Leonard Krog said in the release that the Metral Drive work strengthens an “important connection” between two of the city’s mobility hubs and mitigates environmental impacts of transportation.

“The City of Nanaimo is turning its focus to complete streets, through capitalizing on existing infrastructure projects within the city, to ensure all users are considered when rebuilding our roads,” Krog said.

Claire Trevena, B.C. minister of transportation, said support for active transportation projects is a way to help municipalities and First Nations restart economies.

“People throughout B.C. have a real appetite for safe, alternative ways of getting around…” Trevena said. “The funding we are providing will make it easier for people to connect and interact in their community, address the issues of climate change and congestion, and help with people’s physical and mental well-being.”

RELATED: Nanaimo residents can get a glimpse of Metral Drive ‘complete streets’ plans

READ ALSO: Crosswalk being built at north end of Metral Drive in Nanaimo

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