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South Fraser Perimeter Road Approaches to Creating Land-use Compatibility


The South Fraser Perimeter Road (SFPR) is a four-lane, 40 kilometre route travelling along the
south side of the Fraser River extending from Deltaport Way (Corporation of Delta) to 176th
Street and 104th Avenue (City of Surrey). Advanced by the BC Ministry of Transportation and
Infrastructure (MOTI) with approximately $365 million of federal (Transport Canada) support,
the SFPR was constructed in response to growing regional congestion in the Lower Mainland
and to improve the movement of people, goods. Environmental assessment of the Project was
completed in 2008 with full operation of the road commencing in December, 2013.
Given existing levels of development in Greater Vancouver, the development of the highway
required that the alignment be located directly adjacent to Burns Bog – a 3,000 ha peat bog
located within the community of Delta. Burns Bog is one of Canada’s largest undeveloped land
masses within an urban area and supports distinctive bog vegetation communities and
recognized rare and endangered plant and wildlife species (Figure 1).
Due to its ecological importance, large areas of Burns Bog are protected within a land
conservancy and the area is valued by a large and diverse group of community interests. Given
land constraints in the highway corridor, the ecological importance of the Bog and the high
level of community interest in the area, development of the SFPR required significant effort in
order to reconcile the potentially competing interests of highway construction/operation and
conservation of a valued and highly sensitive ecosystem.
Reconciling these interests was supported by collaboration between highway design and
engineering specialists and experts in bog ecological and conservation. While the process for
reconciling operation of a highway and conservation of a protected area took time, the
outcomes include new information for understanding the complex ecology of the Bog and
improved tools for active management of hydrology to achieve restoration outcomes. These
tools, which facilitated environmentally sensitive development adjacent to Burns Bog, also
represent an important investment in the effort to protect Burns Bog over the long term and
restore areas impacted by past development. 

Conference Paper Details

Session title:
2014 TAC Environmental Achievement Award Nominations
R. Taylor
Environmental issues, Environmental legislation