After weeks of closure due to the nearby Cameron Bluffs fire, the highly anticipated reopening of Highway 4, the main route to Tofino on Vancouver Island’s west coast, is finally on the horizon.
In a tweet, BC Transportation has confirmed that the highway is scheduled to open to limited single-lane-alternating travel by this weekend, June 24th an 25th.
Crews have been working tirelessly to clear fallen trees and debris from the hillside above the affected stretch of highway.
Additionally, temporary safety measures, including a concrete barrier wall and protective mesh curtains suspended by cranes, are being installed to safeguard against falling rocks and trees while the slope recovers from the wildfire.
#BCHwy4 is on track to open to limited single-lane-alternating travel by June 24-25, 2023. Crews have cleared fallen trees and debris from the hillside above and are installing temporary safety measures to allow the highway to reopen. Learn more: https://t.co/D34C9w7PdU pic.twitter.com/upj6Q9SgXz
— BC Transportation (@TranBC) June 20, 2023
The closure of this seven-kilometre stretch of Highway 4 between Cathedral Grove and Koen Road since June 6th has severely impacted the tourism sector on the island’s west coast.
The highway as closed three days after the fire broke out after trees and rocks began tumbling down the slope.
During the closure, the BC Ministry of Transportation established a temporary gravel route detour, which allowed emergency travel and supplies to reach the coastal communities.
Although the detour added four hours to travel time, it provided a lifeline to ensure essential supplies continued to reach the affected areas.
Construction to re-open Hwy 4 is progressing as ministry crew work hard to install fencing on the new roadside barriers to ensure safety. pic.twitter.com/SyX9KrKyh8
— Rob Fleming (@Rob_Fleming) June 21, 2023
Fire crews continue to tackle the 229-hectare Cameron Bluffs fire, now classified as under control.
As of Monday, BC Wildfire Service said they are patrolling areas and extinguishing hot spots when possible.
No date has been set on when the highway will full reopen.