Terrace’s Birch Hill has been reopened to vehicle traffic following repairs to improve and stabilize the road.
A section of the road was closed off at the start of the year after cracks were spotted in the asphalt, and an initial geotechnical assessment prepared for the city said the “road section failed due to a combination of oversteepened hill slopes and improperly designed and constructed retaining walls.”
Construction on the the hill, also known as Atwood St., started in mid-September and took around a month to complete, at a budget of $377,461.
City workers replaced old storm drainage infrastructure during that time, and the repairs were contracted out to Kitimat-based Daudet Creek Contracting Ltd.
Local engineering consultants Tetra Tech completing the design and project management.
“This section of roadway is now rebuilt to a higher standard than the original and is intended to be a long-term repair,” the city stated in an Oct. 25 release.
“While the slope off the gravel shoulder was built steeper than originally intended due to physical constraints, the city continues to assess this. We will be looking for ways to improve safety for pedestrian users, while also improving aesthetics, next spring.”
The centre line of the road still needs to be repainted, which the city says will happen soon. The existing 30 kilometre per hour speed limit sign remains on the hill, and is now joined by “Share the Road” signs and a warning sign reminding pedestrians to use caution walking near the steep slope.