North and Mid Island communities will see new faces working on the Island Highway this winter.
Mainroad North Island Contracting has been awarded the province of BC’s contract for highway maintenance in service area three. The service area covers areas from Comox Valley, Campbell River, and Port Hardy. The company has also been awarded service area two, which covers the mid-Vancouver Island.
Mainroad Group of Companies’s CEO Peter Ashcroft had mentioned that “we are delighted to be returning to our Vancouver Island roots.”
In the company’s press release, Mainroad’s operation team will have mobilized crews, equipment and yards in the service area. The company also intends to reach out to the communities, local stakeholders and First Nations.
“We really appreciate the support we are receiving from the public,” said Mainroad’s Mid- and North Island Contracting general manager Rick Gill. He also noted that the company will “look forward to successfully serving the communities in which the Mainroad Team lives and works.”
Mainroad’s headquarters and primary work yards are located in Cumberland in the Comox Valley. They also have a supporting work yard in Campbell River, Gold River, Port McNeill, Sayward and the Gulf Islands of Quadra, Cortes, Denman and Hornby.
According to the government of BC, both contracts, service area two and three, have a 10-year term and an optional five-year extension. The contracts have already started last Sept. 1, 2018, a day after the existing contracts expire.
Ministry of Transportation and Infrastructure stated in an online press release that “the new maintenance contracts for all service areas require higher standards and a more proactive approach when a severe weather event occurs.”
Along Highway 19 the road will be returned to bare pavement within 24 hours after a severe weather event like a heavy snowfall. The government’s previous standard was to return it to bare pavement within 48 hours.
The government also stated when a weather event is forecasted to occur the company will increase patrol frequency to four hours in anticipation of the weather event. The company has stated in an e-mail correspondence that maintenance workers are already underway with pre-winter activities, preparing for the season.
Mainroad will be responsible for maintaining more than 47,500 kilometres of highway and 2,800 structures. They will also provide maintenance services 24 hours a day, seven days a week, provide a broad range of services including winter maintenance, surface maintenance, drainage maintenance, roadside maintenance, traffic maintenance, bridge maintenance and highway patrol.