Tuesday, April 18, 2006

On The Road: The Big Dig

If anyone has been to Boston in the last decade, you would have heard about the “Big Dig”. What this is essentially is the city removing the big knot of overhead highway that runs through part of their city and putting it underground. As you can imagine, a very big task for all involved, and a big inconvenience for all others.

Lotusland is involved in it’s own “Big Dig”, namely the Canada Line project. If you look at this map, everything in red is underground. They are aiming on having this done before the Olympics in 2010. Frankly, I don’t think they’ll be able to get it done on time. I briefly had talked to someone recently who has the inside scoop on this project, and asked him if it was doable. He response went something like this: Well, they had done something similar in Hong Kong recently. Dig, put in tunnel and cover. They had managed to get it done in time and under budget.

I beg to differ. People in Hong Kong don’t have to deal with the same problems as we do here. There is no minimum wage in Hong Kong, and people tend to work weekends and holidays. Here, we have unionized workers who earn way above the minimum wage (and probably get paid more than I do), and don’t work certain hours and days.

Why do I care? Because this hole that they are digging is adding about 10 minutes to my commute each way. (I cross the area marked as “3” during my commute). I’ve had to make huge circles to get around the stupid construction. Since they have started in November 2005, they’ve managed to dig a hole that spans five blocks! Six months to do five blocks! At this rate it’ll take them until 2017 to finish. According to the website, the construction won’t be done on my stretch of the road until May 2008! That’s two more years of driving around in big circles to get to work.

(I’ve been wanting to post this for a while, but I’ve been waiting for the whole construction thing to piss me off before I did. Well, I finally got pissed off this morning. Bah.)


IT Plumber/Janitor said...

You should see how the nice new bus-only lane they just put in on No. 3 Road a few years ago. The bus are sharing the even narrower lanes with regular vehicles now, and all trees, bus stops, light poles were dug up. 50% of the road surface are now part of the construction. I wonder if I will still be working here when they finish the project so I can take the new skytrain to work. 8P

amber said...

I also hate the dig, the Yaletown station is going uh, down, two blocks from my building and has caused traffic mayhem...both auto and pedestrian. It's supposed to be completed by 2008...yeah, right.

Krissy said...

I hate traffic in that area. It took me 40 min. to get to my hair appointment because of all the traffic delays.
I still don't know why they didn't just utilize the already existing rail corridor a few blocks over... oh yeah. They didn't want to mess up a nice neighbourhood.